Last week, pipeline developer Enbridge Inc. applied for state and federal permits to construct a tunnel around the Line 5 oil pipeline beneath the Straits of Mackinac in northern Michigan. The Associated Press reported the company submitted a joint application to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – noting that approval from both regulators is needed for the project to move forward.
Despite the key environmental and safety benefits of constructing the proposed $500 million upgrade and tunnel, environmental activists continue to oppose the project – largely due to their opposition to the use of fossil fuels, which provide the mainstay of American energy. Michigan’s Democratic Attorney General Dana Nessel has even filed a lawsuit demanding the shutdown of the existing pipeline as a “public nuisance,” despite its critical role in providing the “public” with critical energy resources.
Enbridge’s proactive effort to build a tunnel around Line 5 affirms their commitment to providing Americans with the energy we use and rely on each day, while also maintaining the highest safety standards and focus on environmental conservation.
Many activists have called for switching to an entire renewable energy portfolio – despite the fact that renewables like wind and solar currently provide less than 10% of our nation’s electricity. Natural gas, on the other hand, meets nearly 40% of American power needs, and our transportation sector is fueled almost exclusively by petroleum products.
Line 5 carries up to 23 million gallons of crude oil and natural gas liquids used for propane each day – making it an essential component of our nation’s energy infrastructure network. Most Americans don’t think about where their energy comes from when flipping on the lights, turning on the propane grill, or turning up the thermostat in their homes. But pipelines like Line 5 are key to American energy reliability and resiliency, seamlessly operating day in and day out.