The Red Lake Tribal Council is reaffirming its opposition of Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline replacement project.
In a public notice to band members, Chairman Darrel Seki says the Red Lake Band is challenging permits in various courts.
In the Minnesota Court of Appeals, the band is challenging three permits issued by the Public Utilities Commission: the Certificate of Need, the Route permit and the environmental impact statement.
“There is no need for the project because the Enbridge Mainline currently transports 2.8 million barrels of oil each day. The total ‘need’ of the Minnesota region is 400,000 barrels, the volume that the two refineries in Minnesota process when they are both operating at full capacity,” reads the Notice published Jan. 28.
“There is a surplus of 2.4 million barrels of crude oil each day that flows through are that goes down to the Gulf Coast, into the global market. We are burdened with the risk of Enbridge’s pipelines, but we don’t get any benefits. Clearly there is no need for the new Line 3 pipeline.”
In the U.S. District Court, the Band is challenging permits issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, arguing that the Army Corps did not conduct an independent environmental evaluation of impacts to waters and wetlands, and relied on a state PUC-issued statement.
“We had hoped everyone would accept the sound science behind the exceptionally thorough six years of evidence-based review by regulatory and permitting bodies,” said Enbridge Communications specialist Juli Kellner.
“This included more than 70 public hearings, a 13,500 page Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), four separate reviews by independent administrative law judges, and 320 route modifications in response to stakeholder input and reviews and approvals from the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa (the only Tribe with “Treatment as a State” water quality authority along the pipeline route). Also the US Army Corps of Engineers review was very thorough and included robust public participation, including consultation with 30 tribes.”
A dozen Minnesota legislators recently penned a commentary calling on President Joe Biden to revoke Line 3’s federal permits as he did for Keystone XL.
“We are among the millions of Minnesotans who support an urgent transition toward safe, sustainable and secure energy sources. The truth is that no one who claims to be a leader on climate could ever support the construction of Line 3. By taking swift action, as he did with Keystone, Biden can provide the leadership Minnesota needs to protect the environment and stop an impending climate catastrophe,” said the group in a commentary to the Star Tribune.
Of these twelve legislators, only two represent districts outside of the metro.