Michigan commission reopens record in Line 5 tunnel case

August 23, 2022 By    

The Michigan Public Service Commission in July ordered the record reopened in Enbridge Energy LP’s application to relocate the Line 5 pipeline to a tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac, finding the record deficient on matters of engineering and safety and saying additional evidence is needed for the commission to complete its analysis.

The commission directed Enbridge to file information, documents and any other relevant information to develop a full and complete record on matters, including tunnel engineering and safety, electrical equipment and risk of fire or explosion, and the safety of the current dual pipelines, including leak detection systems and shutdown procedures. The commission also directed Enbridge to file reports and other information from previous agreements with the state and federal governments related to its operation of the current pipeline on the lakebed of the Straits.

Enbridge in April 2020 filed an application seeking siting approval under Act 16 of 1929 to replace and relocate the Line 5 section in the Straits of Mackinac into a new tunnel it would build beneath the lakebed.

The 645-mile interstate pipeline spans both Michigan peninsulas to transport light crude oil and natural gas liquids, including propane used for home heating in Michigan.

In other Line 5 news, a U.S. District judge denied the state of Michigan’s second attempt to move its lawsuit challenging Line 5’s continued operation from federal to state court.

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About the Author:

Brian Richesson is the editor in chief of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at brichesson@northcoastmedia.net or 216-706-3748.

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