Apr 11, 2017 | By: Mal Meyer

Exposed Pipeline Shows Environmentalists, Residents What Is At Stake

While the Minnesota state legislature is in recess until next week, environmental activists anticipate a veto for a controversial bill that could change the environmental review process for oil pipelines. The pending legislation has some on edge as they look deeper at what could be at stake.

Environmental activists have invited residents to come see the aging Enbridge Energy line 3 pipeline.

Marty Cobeneis from the Sierra Club is giving a guided tour of where the current line runs, which is, in part, right underneath Cass Lake.

Enbridge’s plan to replace the line is currently pending under review by the Public Utilities Commission and Minnesota Department of Commerce. Under their preferred route, this segment would be decommissioned and routed to the south.

Many of the citizens are concerned regardless of where it goes.

Under a bill recently passed by state legislature, concerns like this would not be allowed to be submitted during a review process.

While Beltrami county has not issued a statement about the line or legislation, Commissioner Reed Olson says walks like this remind locals just how close the oil gets to area water.

But for House Speaker Kurt Daudt, he says that environmentalist and the Dayton administration are using the review process to stonewall the pipelines.

Governor Mark Dayton says that he believes pipelines should be vetted by the Public Utilities Commission, and that he would veto the bill.

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