THE GREAT LAKES


Whitmer's office slams Enbridge over lawsuit seeking to block state's Line 5 shutdown order

click to enlarge National Wildlife FederationIn 2013, the National Wildlife Federation sent divers to look at Enbridge, Inc.'s aging straits pipelines, finding wide spans of unsupported structures encrusted with exotic zebra mussels and quagga mussels. Gretchen Whitmer’s office assailed Enbridge Inc. for filing a lawsuit Tuesday in an effort to reverse the state’s order to shut down controversial pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac, saying the oil giant was endangering the Great Lakes and “cares only about its bottom line.”The Canadian company’s legal challenge in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids alleges the state lacked the authority to close the Line 5 oil and gas pipelines that cross between waterways connecting Lake Huron and Lake Michigan. “Today’s lawsuit filed by Enbridge brazenly defies the people of Michigan and their right to protect the Great Lakes from a catastrophic oil spill.”Brown points to the disastrous Enbridge oil spill in July 25, 2010, when one of the company’s pipelines ruptured and spewed more than 840,000 gallons of crude oil into a creek that feeds into the Kalamazoo River. Underwater photos revealed that parts of the structure were unsupported.The Great Lakes are home to 21% of the world's fresh surface water, and supply drinking water to 48 million people, including 5 million Michigan residents. The Great Lakes also provide 1.3 million jobs that generate $82 billion in annual wages across the U.S., including more than 350,000 jobs in Michigan, according to Whitmer's office.

metrotimes.com