Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline hearings

Enbridge Energy’s proposal to replace its oil pipeline – Line 3 – to travel 1000 miles from western Canada through Minnesota, has received both support and criticism. The project is said to cost an estimated CAN$2.1 billion, and was discussed in a public meeting with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission.

Line 3 – the old and new

Enbridge intends to replace the old 1968 Line 3, though the project received concerns after recent oil spills and environmental damage.

The current 34 in. pipeline – once 750 000 bpd capacity – was reduced to 410 000 bpd due to safety concerns. The new proposed Line 3 would be 36 in. and have a capacity of 750 000 bbl, allowing crude from Canada to enter the US at an additional 14.3 million gal/d.

Conflicting views

Though supporters agree the new line will be safer and more efficient for oil transportation due to its upgraded technology, critics say the extra oil will damage the environment and increase global warming.

The regulations

Public input will be taken into consideration by the state regulators about the pipeline’s development, concluding hearings on 30 September.

Enbridge is aiming for Line 3’s regulatory approval by mid-2016, with the line operating by late 2017.

Edited from various sources – Grand Forks Herald, Park Rapids Enterprise, Northland News Center – by Stephanie Roker

Published on 27/08/2015

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