Michigan Lawmakers split on what to do about Enbridge Line 5
LANSING, Mich. (SINCLAIR BROADCAST GROUP) —
Enbridge's operation of Line 5, which runs underwater near the Mackinac bridge, has the company in hot water with some lawmakers and others rushing to defend it.
Newschannel 3 Political Reporter Nick Minock has been following the latest developments on the controversial pipeline.
Many lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are calling to protect the Great Lakes and what they think should be done with Line 5.
Tonight he's looking into what lawmakers think should be done. Tonight, we wanted to gauge where the legislature stands on the future of line 5.
The latest developments of Enbridge's operation of their 64-year-old pipeline is stirring a lot of conversation in Lansing.
Some state lawmakers are turning up the heat on the Canadian oil company.
Rep. Jon Hoadly said, “There's so much at risk if that pipeline were to break."
Rep. Winnie Brinks said, “Right now I have a grave, grave concerns about the impact of the environment as well as a massive impact on the economy."
Rep. Jim Runestad said, "I have concerns about how poorly they [Enbridge] did in Kalamazoo."
Rep. Jeremy Moss said, “On line 5, I would love to see a replacement plan."
Hoadly said, “We shouldn't take the risk of moving Canada’s oil."
Other lawmakers are taking a more cautious approach, but they still want the company's feet held to the fire.
Rep. Steve Marino said, “The company's behavior has crossed the point where it's deeply alarming."
Rep. Tom Barrett said, “We have to hold Enbridge accountable for anything on that pipeline."
Rep. Jeff Yaroch said, "... And that's what I’m watching for."
The simmering tensions have other lawmakers coming to Enbridge's defense.
Democrat Sherry Gay-Dagnogo said the pipeline shouldn't be shut down and this entire topic shouldn't be political.
Gay-Dagnogo said, "There are ways to address that without abruptly decommissioning Line 5."
Rep. Dave Maturen said, “I certainly think shutting it down is going to be an economic train wreck for the state."
Rep. Pete Lucido said, "There is no alternative or solution."
Rep. Lee Chatfield said, “Line 5 is important to my district and our state, but we need to ensure that it's being dealt with the right way."
Most of the lawmakers we spoke to say if it's found the pipeline is a threat to the point in which it would gush oil into the Great Lakes.
Lucido said, “Then shut it down by all means."
Enbridge Line 5 isn't a partisan issue. Democrats and Republicans support Line 5, and Democrats and Republicans don't.
Enbridge maintains their pipeline is in safe working condition and said in a statement that the company is focused on the agreement they signed with the state.
They said they believe the agreement protects communities and the environment around the Great Lakes.