The Biden administration is ready to double down on stupidity and close an oil pipeline in Michigan that transports hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil a day. Enbridge, Inc. owns the pipeline known as Line 5 — a 645-mile, 30-inch diameter pipeline that transports up to 22.68 million gallons (540,000 barrels) per day of light crude oil, light synthetic crude, and natural gas liquids through Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas.
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been trying to close Line 5 for more than a year. The state filed a lawsuit ordering Enbridge to shut down production, ostensibly because Line 5 was unsafe. The company countersued, claiming the pipeline, in 65 years of operation, has never had an accident or a leak. Enbridge says it has “no intention” of shutting down Line 5 and that the state’s order “ignores scientific evidence and is based on inaccurate and outdated information.”
But Whitmer and the Biden administration have now enlisted the assistance of Native American tribes, who view Line 5 as “an existential threat to our treaty-protected rights.”
There is no evidence of a “threat,” but that isn’t stopping Biden from attempting to force the closure of the pipeline. Fortunately, the Canadian government is also fighting this nonsense and has taken the dispute to a resolution panel.
The letter asks for Biden to file an official statement of interest via the U.S. Department of Justice affirming the validity of Whitmer’s May 12 shutdown order, seriously consider revocation of the 1991 Presidential Permit that allows Line 5 to operate, and give tribal nations a seat at the negotiating table with the Canadian government, who has invoked the dispute resolution provisions of the 1977 Transit Pipelines Treaty, seeking to halt Whitmer’s closure order.
While not commenting directly on the letter, a senior White House official told FOX Business that they “expect that both the U.S. and Canada will engage constructively in those negotiations.”
“In addition to being one of our closest allies, Canada remains a key U.S. partner in energy trade as well as efforts to address climate change and protect the environment,” the official added.
Republican state legislators in Michigan are sounding the alarm, arguing in a letter that Line 5 is “essential to the lifeblood of the Midwest.”
“Should this pipeline be shut down, tens of thousands of jobs would be lost across Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, and the region; billions of dollars in economy activity would be in jeopardy; and the environment would be at greater risk due to additional trucks operating on roadways and railroads carrying hazardous materials where that is even possible,” the letter reads. “Additionally, as we enter the winter months and temperatures drop across the Midwest, the termination of Line 5 will undoubtedly further exacerbate shortages and price increases in home heating fuels like natural gas and propane at a time when Americans are already facing rapidly rising energy prices, steep home heating costs, global supply shortages, and skyrocketing gas prices.”
Enbridge is arguing that, if Line 5 were shut down, their refinery customers across the northern U.S., as well as Ontario and Quebec would see a shortage of jet fuel, gas, and diesel of about 14.7 million gallons per day, or about 45% of current supply.
The impact on Michigan would be devastating.
Michigan alone would face a propane supply shortage of 756,000 gallons per day and would have to find an alternative supply for anywhere from 4.2 million to 7.77 million US gallons of refined products a day, according to the company.
But this is how you gain credibility in the global green community. By nobly sacrificing economic activity and forcing people to choose between heating their homes and feeding their families, Biden, Whitmer, and other green activists in the U.S. establish their bona fides with global climate hysterics.
As for the rest of us, we’re supposed to sit down, shut up, and freeze.