For decades, the Line 5 oil pipeline has been a threat to our climate, and the the Great lakes – the largest source of fresh water on earth. Only luck has prevented a major oil spill from happening in the last few years. And Enbridge, the pipeline’s owners, have repeatedly violated the law and their own promises to repair and maintain Line 5.
That’s why Michigan’s Democratic Governor Whitmer revoked the permits for Line 5, and gave Enbridge six months to shut down the flow of oil, and transition to cleaner and safer methods. Instead, Enbridge has sued the state, and is blatantly refusing to follow the law.
Because Line 5 brings oil in from Canada, the responsibility to resolve this crisis now falls to President Biden. Biden can either stand with Governor Whitmer and shut down Line 5, or take the side of Enbridge – one of the dirtiest pipeline companies on earth with a terrible track record of polluting Michigan, and the rest of the planet.
There are a ton of good reasons to shut down Line 5. And not a lot of reasons to trust Enbridge – the same company behind DAPL, Line 3, and other big, dirty pipeline projects in the US. Here’s a great video from our friends at Oil and water don’t mix with the 5 things you need to know about Line 5 today:
If you’re more of a text person, here’s a quick recap of the line 5 struggle:
Aging pipelines owned by foreign company Enbridge lie exposed in the water at the bottom of the Straits of Mackinac, where Lake Michigan and Lake Huron meet. These pipelines, called Line 5, were built in 1953 during the Eisenhower administration.
When another Enbridge pipeline ruptured in 2010, it spilled over 1 million gallons of heavy crude oil into the Kalamazoo River. It was the largest land-based oil spill in U.S. history and is still being cleaned up. Enbridge’s Line 5 through the Straits of Mackinac is 15 years older than its pipeline that gushed oil into the Kalamazoo River.
Despite assurances that they could detect a leak “almost instantaneously,” Enbridge initially misdiagnosed the massive spill into the Kalamazoo River, restarting pumps twice and allowing 17 hours to lapse before final shutdown. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency compared their poor handling of the disaster to the bumbling of the “Keystone Kops.”
This was just one of 1,068 Enbridge spills that dumped 7.4 million gallons of oil between 1999 and 2013 — an average of 71 spills and 500,000 gallons leaked per year. That’s more than one oil spill every week for the last 15 yearshttps://www.oilandwaterdontmix.org/