State Court Rejects Challenge to Line 3 Pipeline

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Minnesota Supreme Court declined to take up challenges by tribal and conservation groups and ruled that the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (MPUC) can move forward with an environmental review of Enbridge Energy’s proposal to replace its aging Line 3 crude oil pipeline.

The project would likely have faced long delays if the court agreed to hear the appeals.  The decision, rendered in a one-page order Tuesday, immediately drew praise from the Minnesota division of the American Petroleum Institute (API), whose director described Line 3 as "the most studied pipeline project in state history – having undergone four years and thousands of hours of environmental review."

“Line 3 helps to provide the reliable and affordable energy Minnesotans use every day and it’s time to move the replacement project and the $2.9 billion investment in Minnesota forward and update our state’s energy infrastructure,” said Erin Roth, executive director of API Minnesota.

Calgary, Alberta-based Enbridge says the court decision decision means that the MPUC can now move forward with addressing one deficiency in the environmental impact statement identified by the Minnesota Court of Appeals. That court upheld most of the environmental review in June, but sent the case back to the PUC for further work because the review did not address a possible spill in the Lake Superior watershed.

API Minnesota is a division of Washington-based API, a standards-setting organization whose more than 600 member companies represent every segment of the U.S. oil and natural gas industry.

— P&GJ Staff & Wire Report

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