Gov. Rejects Shutdown of Great Lakes Oil Pipeline That's Losing Coating

"Michigan’s Pipeline Safety Advisory Board had reviewed the 65-year-old Enbridge Line 5 crude oil pipeline and recommended shutting it down immediately."

"Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has rejected the recommendation of an independent pipeline safety advisory board to shut down an aging crude oil pipeline that has been losing sections of its protective coating where it crosses beneath the Great Lakes.

The board called for an immediate, temporary shutdown of the 65-year-old pipeline in December after Enbridge, the Canadian company that owns and operates the line, notified the board that sections of anti-corrosion coating had come off the dual pipelines that run along the bottom of the Straits of Mackinac. Line 5 has had more than two dozen leaks over its lifetime, and there have been concerns about the pipeline's outer coatings, but as recently as March, company officials said the pipelines were in as good of condition as the day they were installed.

"Line 5 is violating its easement right now because the coating for the pipeline is not intact," said Mike Shriberg, a member of the board and the executive director of the National Wildlife Federation's Great Lakes Regional Office. "They have bare metal exposed to water, and they can't tell us anything significant about the extent of the problem.""

Phil McKenna reports for InsideClimate News January 31, 2018.

Source: InsideClimate News, 02/02/2018