This a follow-up to Honor the Earth’s (Winona LaDuke) commentary (July 10) and Enbridge’s (Brad Shamla) commentary (July 14) in the Pioneer on the proposed Enbridge Line 3 replacement. Shamla stated that the “Readers deserve the facts about the Line 3 replacement.” I agree 100 percent, but that said, for John Q. Public to make a decision on whether or not Line 3 should become a reality, information other than just Enbridge’s is needed.
LaDuke stated that according to Desmog.com, the organization “Minnesotans for Line 3” is funded and run by Enbridge executives. Shamla stated no Enbridge executive sits on the board. He did not confirm nor reject whether or not Enbridge funds the organization.This raises the question -- do they and if so how much?
Shamla went on to state the state Public Utilities Commission approved the need and the Enbridge preferred route, confirming the administrative law judge recommendations. Not so. The administrative law judge recommended that line 3 should be replaced, but within the existing line 3 trench. Also Enbridge did not mention the fact that the Minnesota Department of Commerce testified that Minnesota would be better off if Enbridge ceased the operation of existing Line 3 without any new pipeline being built. Commerce further stated that Line 3 provided limited benefits to Minnesota. Enbridge data at the time of the environmental impact statement confirms the Commerce Department recommendation. Roughly 85 percent of the crude transported through the Enbridge pipes adjacent to Bemidji leave Minnesota and Wisconsin for the gulf and East Coast. Much of it goes for exportation.
Reference was also made to the University of Minnesota Duluth Line 3 economic study. But Enbridge made no reference to the following disclaimers: 1. The report results are dependent upon the accuracy of the data provided by Enbridge; 2. After pipeline construction, no economic impact will be felt in the region; and 3. Publication and dissemination of this report or its data is not an endorsement by the Bureau of Business and Research at UMD of Enbridge or its projects.
Shamla also stated that factual information on Line 3 can be obtained by visiting the Enbridge website -- that's like having the fox watch the henhouse. To separate the half-truths, misinformation and selective presentations, one should also visit sites such as Honor The Earth, Friends of the Headwaters, the Minnesota Center for Environment Advocacy and the PUC docket.