DNR determines 5 billion gallons of dewatering won’t be harmful, much of the state is in moderate drought

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says it has determined that pumping more groundwater to make way for Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 pipeline won’t have a harmful effect. 

Enbridge initially got permission to pump about 510 million gallons of water from the trenches it is digging for its replacement pipeline. 

Now, it says it has to pump nearly ten times as much to almost five billion gallons. 

Opponents of Line 3 say that volume could hurt the quality of groundwater and potentially impact sensitive wetlands, lakes, and streams along the route. 

The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe requested Gov. Walz to rescind this dewatering permit over concerns that the displaced water will have a detrimental impact on the manoomin harvest this year.

Manoomin, or wild rice, has great cultural significance as a sacred food to the Ojibwe, and in Ojibwe grammar, manoomin is a living noun.

More than 60 percent of Minnesota is under moderate drought conditions.


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University.


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