I'm sure you've heard that phrase before - "Stop Line 3", but you may not know exactly what it's all about.
Line 3 is a proposed pineline from Alberta Canada to Superior, Wisconsin. Enbrigde, the company who maintains the line, says that the replacement is necessary to "maintain [their] high standards". They say it is better to go forward with a replacement to "minimize future maintenance", and create fewer disruptions to landowners and the environment. The proposition is to expand the current pipleine from 34in to 36in, and create a whole different corridor for the pipeline.
The pros of the pipeline are relatively obvious:
- Jobs: These jobs may not be filled by locals, and are temporary -not permanent - in nature.
- Economic activity/impact: They say it will bring a positive wave to the Minnesotan economy, however the locals are in disagreement saying that it would create more negative impact than a positive one.
The cons, however, outweigh the possible positive outcomes of the replacement. Line 3 will carry enough oil to produce about 170 billion kilograms of carbon dioxide per year, equivalent to about 50 coal power plants, or 38 million vehicles on our roads. The areas they want to use for the new corridor run through untouched wetlands, the Mississippi river, Lake Superior, and treaty territory of the Anishinaabe people. Pipelines spill. There have been almost 3500 spills since 2010, with only 3.8% of the clean up costs being paid by the operator. 126 of those spills were made by Enbridge-operated lines, causing an estimated $914.3 million in environmental and property damage, as well as emergency response costs. It has happened before and it will again. Line 3 would contribute more to climate change than Minnesota’s entire economy. Line 3 would violate the treaty rights of Anishinaabe peoples and nations in its path — wild rice is a centerpiece of Anishinaabe culture, it grows in numerous watersheds Line 3 seeks to cross. Here's a link to the most recent spillage by Enbridge on August 10.
So what can we do about it?