Placing an oil pipeline in a larger tunnel, drilled deep below the bottom of the lake, would reduce the likelihood of oil being released into the strait to virtually zero and eliminate the potential for mooring. “This measure is based on strong scientific evidence that the continued operation of the pipelines poses an unacceptable risk to the health and safety of Michigan residents,” said Schwab. Part of the conflict stems from the current government`s persistence on the pipeline in the Strait being closed within two years, while Enbridge says the company could build the tunnel the fastest in 2024 and close the tunnel. The underwater gas pipelines were hit and damaged in three different locations by an anchor that was accidentally dropped and pulled by a merchant ship in April 2018. In June, Enbridge officials announced that at some point in 2019, pipelines had been hit again by anchors or cables used by nearby vessels, damaging the pipeline`s lining and severely damaging a support anchor. The attacks were likely caused by Enbridge`s own contracted vessels, investigators concluded. The Michigan Court of Claims ruled Thursday that legislation authorizing Enbridge to build a tunnel under the Strait of Mackinac for a new section of the pipeline is constitutional. “Line 5 has been operating safely and reliably in the Strait for more than six decades, and this agreement makes a safe pipeline even safer,” said Brad Shamla, vice president of liquid pipeline operations at Enbridge. Fuel industry representatives and independent experts believe that closing the two pipelines under the Strait of Mackinac would cut not only thousands of gallons of propane per day in the Upper Peninsula, but also deliveries of light crude to Detroit, Toledo and Sarnia, Ontario, refineries that convert oil into gas. diesel and kerosene. On June 25, an Ingham County Court judge ordered the entire line to be stopped.
Enbridge was responsible for one of the largest domestic oil spills in U.S. history — a major leak on one of its large oil transmission pipelines near Marshall in July 2010. This pollution polluted more than 38 miles of the Kalamazoo River and took four years and more than a billion dollars to clean up. Enbridge agreed in 2016 to a $177 million transaction with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency, including penalties of $US 62 million, due to Marshall pollution and a spill from another pipeline in Romeoville, Illinois, in 2010. On June 6, Enbridge then filed an appeal in court to “determine the constitutional validity and enforceable of previous agreements between the company and the State of Michigan,” the company said at the time. Canadian oil transportation giant Enbridge may soon lose permission to operate a controversial and aging pipeline at the bottom of Lake Mackinac. Mike Shriberg, the executive director of the National Wildlife Federation of the Great Lakes, who worked on Governor Snyder`s security board, issued a statement on Kelly`s verdict and called it “terrifying for the Great Lakes.”