MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – The Minnesota Court of Appeals on Tuesday heard disputes over a replacement plan for Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 in northern Minnesota, which opponents have called unnecessary because of the final drop in oil demand.
The Minnesota Department of Commerce, the Chippewa Red Lake Band, and Ojibwe’s White Earth Band, along with several indigenous խմբ environmental groups, told three judges that Enbridge had failed to demonstrate the long-term need for the Line 3 project. “The state Independent Utilities Commission issued the certificate of need to the company after Enbridge indicated the need to transport crude oil rather than the demand for the raw material itself,” said Catherine Hinderley, a Commerce Department attorney.
“The demanders for crude oil are refineries, so the department thinks you should look at the demand for crude oil,” Hinderli said. “The space on the pipeline is due to the desire of oil producers to sell and deliver as much oil as possible.”
The Calgary-based company in Alberta, after receiving a construction wastewater permit from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, stopped at a replacement pipeline, the last permit to approve a $ 2.6 billion project for years. The PUC rejected the tribunals’ motion to suspend the project, reviewing their approval, and last month the Court of Appeals rejected their request to stop the construction of the project.
PUC lawyer Ason Eason Marisam said the commission has a different definition of demand than a division. Judges Lucinda E. Ess Esson և Paul M. Reyes Jr., both former Democratic Gov. Mark Dayton, questioned why it seems that forecasts are being used to determine how much oil will flow through the pipeline from 2035.
“I find it really difficult to see where the demand forecast is 15 years from now,” said Esson Esson. “When I looked at these reports և data, I expected to see not only big predictions that 2030 or pipeline bandwidth is going to be 2035, but what is really in demand, I do not see any of that.”
Reiss said he shared Esson’s concerns about dependence rather than demand, and questioned whether the commission used “outdated data” to assess the potential environmental impact of the pipeline, as climate change policy has evolved in recent years. Enbridge’s attorney, Christina Bruceven, argues that the PUC did indeed do so, in addition to additional security measures related to the epidemic.
Line 3 starts in Alberta, Canada and slides in a corner of North Dakota before crossing Minnesota on the way to the Superior Terminal in Enbridge, Wisconsin. Replacement sections in Canada, North Dakota, and Wisconsin have already been completed, leaving only 337 miles (542 kilometers) in Minnesota. In total, Enbridge expects to spend $ 2.9 billion on US stakes.
Several demonstrators have been arrested in recent months for interfering in the project, which they say violates federal treaties and poses a significant threat of spillage.
Opponents of the pipeline have pressured President Biden to revoke the federal water permit for Line 3 after revoking the permit for the chairman of the Keystone XL pipeline, which halted construction. Enbridge Energy said the decision would not affect Line 3 as it was already in effect.
The Minnesota Court of Appeal is expected to rule by June.
Mohamed Ibrahim is a member of the Associated Press / Report for America Statehouse News Initiative. Report for America is a non-profit national service that places journalists in the local media to cover impeccable issues.