Leaders call on Gov. Whitmer to keep campaign promise to revoke Line 5 easement
LANSING, Mich. — Business, environmental and tribal leaders urged Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to uphold her campaign promise to remove the Line 5 pipeline from the Straits of Mackinac during a press conference Wednesday.
“For too long, Michigan has lived with the threat of a catastrophic oil spill from the Line 5 pipeline,” said Rich Bergmann, managing partner of Round Lake Group Hospitality. “Tourism supports thousands of local small businesses, families and workers across the state. Our economy is incredibly fragile in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis and, should an easily foreseeable and entirely preventable spill happen, Northern Michigan’s $65 billion tourism economy could be devastated beyond repair. Gov. Whitmer must act on her campaign promise and revoke the Line 5 easement without further delay.”
“As a tribal leader and Michigander, I feel it’s important to speak up and call Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to action on Line 5,” said Bryan Newland, chairman of the Bay Mills Indian Community. “According to experts, a major pipeline break would halt fishing in the Great Lakes, causing a devastating ripple effect that will hurt our tribal economies and commercial fishing operations. We cannot allow that to happen. It’s well past time for this dangerous pipeline to be removed. The governor needs to act now.”
“Enbridge’s Line 5 pipeline is a ticking time bomb for the entire Great Lakes region,” said Beth Wallace, Great Lakes Freshwater campaigns manager for the National Wildlife Federation. “Enbridge Energy cannot be trusted to protect our most treasured natural resource. This summer, Enbridge discovered two separate instances of damage on the pipeline within weeks of one another. The incidents clearly show Enbridge lacks the ability to monitor its own pipeline and react in a timely fashion to significant damage or a rupture. Gov. Whitmer has plenty of evidence showing Line 5 is an imminent risk, and that’s why we are calling on her to uphold her promise to Michiganders and remove the pipeline for good.”
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