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State Pipeline Safety Board To Meet

Protesters call for the shutdown of Line Five - file photo
Michigan Public Radio Network

(MPRN-Lansing) A state board will hear Monday from members of the public on alternatives to Enbridge Energy’s Line Five. The pipeline carries oil and gas on a route that runs beneath the Straits of Mackinac. 

It was recently revealed workers accidentally removed a protective coating on portions of the line. Safety board spokesman Nick Assendelft says the board will discuss what should be done about that.

“The board exists to make sure that pipelines throughout the state of Michigan are run in a safe way for the residents of Michigan and the environment.”

Enbridge says repairs on the line will begin this week. The board is also expected to send a request to the U.S. Department of Transportation seeking permission to create a statewide online map of the network of energy pipelines. Valerie Brader is the director of the Michigan Agency for Energy and co-chair of the pipeline safety board.

“It would be really convenient if you could just go online and see a map. Right? Here’s where it is. Here’s where it crosses. Here’s how close it gets to my house, or my kid’s school, or whatever.”

That information is already available, but only on a county-by-county basis. Brader says the restrictions were put in place over security concerns. But she says it makes more sense for the public to have easy access to a more-complete map.

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