As chamber of commerce executives in the region, we’re pleased that a recent administrative law judge’s recommendation acknowledges the need for replacing the aging Line 3 pipeline in northern Minnesota. The judge’s report makes it clear this project is needed for the people of Minnesota. It’s needed for our economy, to continue to protect our environment, and to meet our energy needs. Plus, replacing aging infrastructure is only common sense.
Line 3 is an important part of the North American energy transportation infrastructure, moving both light and heavy crude oil to refineries in Minnesota and the Midwest. The demand for reliable and efficient pipeline capacity into and through Minnesota will continue, and any decrease will negatively affect reliability and supply to Minnesota refineries. Nearly half of the gasoline and diesel fuel used in Minnesota is produced by two refineries in the state, which are supplied by Enbridge.
Enbridge has proposed a route that is the best route for Minnesota – it avoids high population centers, sensitive environmental areas and drinking supplies. And the company has secured easements from 94 percent of private landowners on the proposed route, which will traverse existing energy infrastructure for more than 80 percent of the route.
The prompt replacement of Line 3 is an essential project for Minnesotans that will ensure the safety and environmental protection of our important natural resources as well by ensuring the safe transportation of crude oil to refineries in Minnesota, the Midwest and beyond. We urge the Minnesota PUC to approve this project as proposed and encourage others to support this important infrastructure project.
Maureen Scallen Failor is president of the Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce. Also signing this letter are David Minor, president and CEO of the Eau Claire Chamber of Commerce; David Owens, president of the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Barry Wilfahrt, president and CEO of The Chamber, Grand forks/East Grand Forks; and Taylor Pedersen, president and CEO of the Superior-Douglas County Area Chamber of Commerce.
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