MPSC Permits Arguments on Possible Impacts of Greenhouse Gas Emissions

The state of Michigan can now include climate change impact as a factor when it decides whether to allow the construction of Enbridge’s oil tunnel.

The project would put an oil pipeline into a tunnel running along the bottom of the Straits of Mackinac.

On Wednesday, the Michigan Public Service Commission denied a bid to revisit public need for some parts of Line 5. However, the commission will permit arguments about the possible impacts of greenhouse gas emissions related to the tunnel.

Enbridge released the following statement on the MPSC’s decision:

Enbridge is pleased that the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) agreed with the Administrative Law Judge’s rulings that the project under consideration is the four-mile pipeline segment replacement and that  “the replacement of the four-mile segment of Line 5 in the Straits is not cause for a review of the entire pipeline system.”

We welcome the Commission’s finding, “that the issue of public need for the pipeline has been a long-settled matter since the pipeline was first approved in 1953, and that such approvals under law and Commission precedent do not contain time limits on such determinations. ” 

Enbridge will continue to work with the Commission on its review of our application and towards a successful conclusion to this proceeding. 

Our aim is simple. To replace the two pipelines in the Straits with an even safer pipeline encased in a concrete tunnel well below the lakebed. This totally eliminates anchor strikes, improves safety and environmental protections, and continues to provide Michiganders and neighboring states with the energy they need.

Recent surveys show most Michiganders support the Great Lakes Tunnel project, including the replacement pipeline. Enbridge is committed to building it in a way that improves safety and environmental protections for years to come.