Line 3 Replacement Project protects the environment, while enhancing the economy

From extensive surveying work to environmental management practices, L3RP minimizes impacts to land

Safety and environmental protection are built into Enbridge’s proposed Line 3 Replacement Project.

And they started with 242,125 hours out in the field.

That’s how long we spent from 2013 through 2015 doing surveying work across Minnesota—with 511 field staff surveying wetlands, water bodies, cultural resources, and threatened and endangered species to help determine a preferred project route that minimizes potential impacts to people and the environment.

And when the shovels recently hit the ground for Line 3 Replacement Project construction activities in Wisconsin, our environmental protection efforts hit another gear.

“Enbridge has very high standards. We do everything that we can to keep Mother Nature safe,” says Tami, an environmental inspector with Enbridge’s Line 3 Replacement Project.

“We put up silt fence. We use a lot of straw bales. We use bio-logs that filter water. We make sure that when they’re pumping water, that it’s all filtered and goes through dewatering structures. We put sides on the bridges to keep dirt and things from going in the streams and the rivers,” she says.

“We work real hard to keep the streams and water bodies and the wetlands all protected.”

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The Line 3 Replacement Program (L3RP), the largest project in Enbridge history, is a safety and maintenance-driven initiative that proposes to fully replace 1,031 miles of Line 3 with new pipeline and associated facilities, using the newest and most advanced pipeline technology, on either side of the U.S.-Canada border.

The American portion of the L3RP, known as the Line 3 Replacement Project, represents a potential $2.9-billion private investment—with more than $2 billion of it in Minnesota—that could create well-paying jobs, economic spinoffs for local communities during construction, local community investments, and ongoing tax revenue.

From an environmental standpoint, Enbridge’s L3RP preferred route selection process through Minnesota was enhanced via community, landowner and government input, along with those 242,125 hours of field work—minimizing impact, and maximizing colocation opportunities within existing utility corridors.

Environmental management practices during construction will minimize short-term disruption and long-term impacts to land, and we aim to restore the pipeline right-of-way as close to pre-construction condition as possible.

“This is a chance for us to bring a lot of different resources to the table,” says Superior Mayor Jim Paine, “to make sure we have a safe project . . . an environmentally healthy project, that works for the environment, for labor, for our communities.”