Minnesota needs the Line 3 Replacement Project and we need you to take action



Your Support is Vital

An Administrative Law Judge hosted a round of 16 public hearings in September and October and a public comment period continued through November 22 to collect input on Enbridge’s Line 3 Replacement Project Certificate of Need and the Route Permit applications.

Thank you to all of you who participated in this important public process!

You can still support

It is still important that you make your voice heard on this vital energy infrastructure project. Share your thoughts with others to help us demonstrate the wide and deep support for Enbridge's Line 3 Replacement Project.

Here’s how you can help:

  1. Contact your legislator and local elected officials about the importance of this maintenance and integrity project. Please copy the governor and the MPUC on any written support.
  2. Write a letter to the editor of your local or regional paper showing your support for Enbridge or our Line 3 Replacement.
  3. Email us at enbridgeinmn@enbridge.com to request that a company representative speak in your community about Enbridge, the Line 3 Replacement Project, or an energy-related topic.
  4. Talk to peers, business associates and others about the benefits of energy infrastructure and Enbridge’s projects in Minnesota.

Reasons to support

Energy efficiency

  • Enbridge’s proposal to replace Line 3 is the responsible choice in terms of improving its overall energy efficiency and reducing GHG emissions. Replacing the existing Line 3 with a new 36-inch pipe will result in fewer GHG emissions than either maintaining the existing line (currently shipping at reduced capacity of 390,000 barrels per day (bpd) and moving the balance of 370,000 bpd by rail) or replacing the existing line with like-for-like 34-inch pipe.
  • Operating at 760,000 bpd, the Project will save 195 gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity and thereby reduce carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) emissions by 97,000 tons per year compared to using a 34-inch pipeline. It takes less energy to move the same liquid through a wider 36-inch pipeline than it does to move it through a 34-inch pipeline. These energy savings are enough to power about 14,700 homes in Minnesota annually.
  • The Line 3 Replacement Project will decrease GHG emissions by 49%. Comparing the use of the existing Line 3 pipeline plus supplemental rail transport to operate at a combined 760,000 bpd, to the proposed Line 3 Replacement, results in an estimated decrease of approximately 586 tons of CO2e/day. Or, as stated, about a 49% decrease in GHG emissions. This is the equivalent of removing approximately 41,000 cars from the road.

Displacement

  • Replacing Line 3 will displace shipments of crude transported by rail – a less safe, less energy efficient and more carbon intensive mode of transport.
  • According to the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) the Project will have nominal, if any, impact on upstream Western Canadian oil sands production, since shippers already have access to other markets and other transportation modes such as rail. The FEIS states “if the heavy crude transported on (Line 3R) displaces other heavy Canadian crude, market-wide supply and demand are unaffected by the Project, no change in upstream and downstream (GHG) emissions would occur.”

Need for the pipeline

  • Minnesota relies on Enbridge pipelines to provide crude oil to its two large refineries in the Twin Cities. The existing Line 3 is one of Enbridge’s pipelines that deliver crude oil from Canada to Minnesota, Wisconsin and other North American refineries.
  • While Minnesota hosts two in-state refineries, it produces no crude oil supply of its own. The Enbridge Mainline System IS Minnesota’s connection to the crude oil market. The Enbridge Mainline System is the exclusive pipeline source of crude supply for the Minnesota refineries.
  • Enbridge meets nearly 80 percent of the refining demand in Minnesota – that means that 4 out of the 5 cars in Minnesota parking lots now probably have gasoline in them that came to the state in an Enbridge pipeline.
  • Forecasts indicate that the Project will be fully utilized once in service, providing more adequate, reliable and efficient supplies to refineries, including the Minnesota refineries;
  • The Line 3 Replacement project will create 8,600 family-sustaining jobs.

Preferred route is best and balanced

  • Enbridge has found a route that follows existing utility corridors.
  • Since Line 3 was built in 1968, communities along the right-of-way, such as Bemidji and Grand Rapids, have grown, become more developed, and expanded adjacent to the right-of-way. Replacing Line 3 in these areas would have a disruptive impact on those communities. 
  • The preferred route is not a new route. The preferred route follows existing energy infrastructure, including existing oil and/or gas pipelines, transmission or utility lines, and roads, for more than 80% of the route. In planning the preferred route, Enbridge focused on a balanced approach that took into account sensitive resources, safety, population centers, accessibility, congestion, as well as co-location with existing energy infrastructure. The preferred route underwent extensive engineering and environmental planning to ensure the protection of sensitive resources, strategic placement of permanent valve in accessible locations to ensure safety.

Safety/Best Management Practices

  • When building a pipeline, safety of people and the environment are the highest priority. Enbridge takes that responsibility very seriously and instills that into its contracts with vendors like mine.
  • Replacing aging infrastructure like pipelines is imperative to protecting the environment. Modern-day preventive maintenance and inspection technology make accidents, especially large releases, highly unlikely. In the event of a leak or other incident, Enbridge has robust and tested emergency response equipment, training and expertise to ensure a quick and effective response.
  • Pipelines are the safest way to move crude oil or other liquid products according to PHMSA.

Environmental Protection

  • The MPCA has recently released the Mississippi River Watershed report that shows the cleanest waters in the state are in northern Minnesota, basically along Highway 2 from Bemidji to Grand Rapids. That is the exact same location of the Enbridge pipeline right of way. This shows that energy infrastructure and clean waters can co-exist.

Deactivation

  • Leaving the permanently deactivated pipeline in place is the safest option as it reduces the risk of soil stability issues, avoids major construction activities and reduces the potential risk to existing pipelines from heavy equipment.
  • Deactivating a pipeline in‐place is the most commonly‐used industry method to retire a pipeline.