The Northern Express – This Week’s Top 5
GROUPS: LET’S PREVENT AN OIL SPILL; NOT HAVE TO CLEAN ONE UP
Environmental groups want Gov. Rick Snyder to take action after the US Coast Guard announced they would be unprepared to respond to a potentially catastrophic oil spill at the Straits of Mackinac.
The area between the Upper and Lower peninsulas has drawn increasing attention since Enbridge, operator of a 50-plus-year-old underwater pipeline that crosses the Straits, said they planned to expand the pipeline’s capacity.
“If our governor is serious about protecting the Great Lakes, he will heed the Coast Guard warning and prevent tar sands from moving through the Straits as a condition of the state’s easement with Enbridge,” said Liz Kirkwood, executive director of For Love of Water in Traverse City.
Enbridge has said the heavy tar sands oil from the Canadian Prairies is not moving through the Straits, but the watchdog groups point out this could change without notice. An Endbridge pipeline failed near Kalamazoo in 2010 causing the largest inland oil spill in US history.
The Coast Guard, Enbridge, and other responders conducted a simulated oil spill exercise Sept. 17 in the area south of the Straits.