Construction, operation, and maintenance of the proposed utility tunnel will be fully paid for by Enbridge

Clearing up questions on cost.

There have been a lot of questions about costs related to the proposed utility tunnel that would house a replacement for Line 5 under the Straits and rightfully so, as this is major infrastructure project in Northern Michigan. With the Mackinac Bridge Authority’s oversight, this project would provide an incredible economic boost for Northern Michigan, employee hundreds of skilled trade workers, and ensure our state’s vital, safe and well-maintained transportation infrastructure will continue to support our business needs.

So who will be paying for it? Enbridge.

The October agreement mandates that the construction, operation, and maintenance of the proposed utility tunnel will be fully paid for by Enbridge. The cost is estimated to be between $350 million to $500 million for construction and design of this large infrastructure project, all of which will be paid by Enbridge. No taxpayer dollars will be used for these purposes. You may have heard that separate from these costs footed by Enbridge, the state is asking for a $4.5 M Appropriation to pay for necessary independent oversight of the project. This appropriation is a fraction of the $630 million supplemental spending plan sent to lawmakers Nov. 14. As Kurt Weiss, spokesperson for the Michigan State Budget Office puts it, "This money is really for the oversight of Enbridge, if you will, and the administration to make sure the project is managed to the state's satisfaction”.  The appropriated funds would cover the cost of installing radar in the Straits to provide real-time wave height monitoring and cover any additional staffing needs for the Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA) to monitor Enbridge’s compliance. This funding would also ensure that no bridge revenues would be used for the tunnel project oversight.

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The Mackinac Bridge Authority is the Right Choice to Oversee the Tunnel

"Because of proximity and history operating an important public asset, the MBA is the logical choice to oversee this tunnel, ensure its safe operation and continue to protect the Straits of Mackinac and the Mackinac Bridge, our state’s most iconic structure". 

The recently retired Kirk Steudle, served 31 years with the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), and spent the last 13 as MDOT Director. He was re-appointed to the Mackinac Bridge Authority (MBA), as a private citizen, effective Nov. 1st of this year, where he plans to continue to protect the Mackinac Bridge and the Straits. Kirk believes that the MBA is right entity to oversee the proposed utility tunnel. In a recent opinion piece featured in the the Traverse City Record Eagle, he shares his belief that the MBA should seize the opportunity to assist in safeguarding the Mackinac Bridge, the Straits, and our State. Capitalizing on its credibility and expertise to protect our state's critical infrastructure, rather than being a bystander as this project takes shape


Click Here to Read the Full Piece 

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"A great deal for Michigan – for its environment, for its taxpayers and for its workers".

Tunnel under the Straits is the best way to handle Line 5

The proposed utility tunnel under the Straits will;

  • Ensure Environmental Protections

  • Provide Energy Security

  • Create Good-Paying Jobs.

In a recent guest column, featured in the Free Press, Secretary-Treasurer of the Michigan Building and Construction Trades Council, Pat Devlin, reiterates the importance of maintaining Michigan's critical infrastructure. He, like many, believes that the tunnel would virtually eliminate the possibility of an oil spill in the Straits and provide a comprehensive solution to connect our peninsulas while protecting the Great Lakes. This substantial infrastructure plan would have an enormous positive impact on Northern Michigan communities. Providing years of high paying jobs, the tunnel plan would 

Click Here to Read the Full Story in the Free Press

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Protecting the Great Lakes

The Great Lakes are essential to Michigan. So is safe, reliable energy. Agreements with Enbridge to build a utility tunnel deep in the bedrock will essentially eliminate the risk of an oil spill at the Straits, provide energy security, and better connect our peninsulas. 


Click Here to View the Full Infographic 


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2018 Midterm Election Results are in!

2018 Midterm Election Results 

Democrat Gretchen Whitmer will be the next Governor of Michigan after defeating Republican challenger Bill Schuette. Whitmer, a former Senate Minority Leader will be joined by former Detroit city official Garlin Gilchrist II as the next Lieutenant Governor. Other notable positions include new Secretary of State Joceyln Benson (D) and new Attorney General Dana Nessel (D).

In the legislature, at the State level, Republicans maintain the majority in the State House and State Senate. Republicans will hold 22 of 38 MI Senate seats and 58 of 110 MI House seats in the next legislature beginning in January of 2019. 



At the National level, while the Democrats have captured the majority in the House of Representatives, Republicans solidified their majority in the Senate. From Michigan, U.S Senator Debbie Stabenow (D) secured her 4th term in a tight race against Republican John James. In the U.S. House, Democrats flipped seats in Michigan's 8th and 11th congressional districts. In the 8th, Democrat Elissa Slotkin defeated Republican incumbent Mike Bishop and in the 11th district, Democrat Haley Stevens defeated Republican Lena Epstein. 

Click Here for Full Results

Join the election update conference call next Wednesday, November 14 at 2:00pm for more in depth coverage on Michigan's new legislature and what it may mean for you. Register Now!

Register Today for an Update on Michigan's New Legislature

Wednesday Nov. 14 Join the Michigan Oil and Gas Association's Industry Advocates for a Post-Election Update with Bret Marr, Member of Muchmore Harrington Smalley & Associates (MHSA). Get an in-depth look at Michigan's new Legislature and what it may mean for you.


Bret Marr joined MHSA in 2003, and became a member of Muchmore Harrington Smalley & Associates, LLC in 2015. Prior to that, he successfully served as Director of Legislative Affairs for former Governor John Engler. Bret served as the primary contact between the Michigan Legislature and Governor Engler on legislative and appropriations issues. Bret coordinated Michigan’s electric restructuring plan in the Legislature as well as the rewrite of Michigan’s Telecommunications Act. He also shepherded numerous changes to Michigan’s tax structure, including a rewrite of the Brownfield program and streamlining of the tax reverted property process. He is consistently voted one of Lansing’s top lobbyists.

Register Now for the call on Wednesday Nov. 14, 2018 at 2:00pm ET.  

**Conference Call-in Information will be provided to Registrants prior to the event

2019 Michigan Oil and Gas Industry Legislative Education Day

Don't forget to mark your calendars for the Michigan Oil and Gas Industry's Legislative Education Day, set to take place on Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019 at the Radisson Hotel Lansing at the Capitol. The event will provide a great opportunity to meet with new representatives and reconnect with returning ones.

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Webinar: GeoScience for Community Priorities


AGI's next free Critical Issues webinar, Geoscience for Community Priorities, will be held on Wednesday November 14, 2018, at 2:00 PM EST / 11:00 AM PST.

Experts in geoscience communication, education, and engagement will discuss a variety of different techniques, media, and principles for more effective communication and collaboration between community leaders, decision makers, and geoscientists. For more information, 

To register for this webinar, visit:

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Michigan Economic Update


According to National experts, Michigan has demonstrated strong economic growth over the past year, driven by impressive growth in mining, logging, and construction employment. 

  •  Michigan’s mining, logging, and construction industry has led employment growth since the President was
    elected, increasing by over 10 percent.
  • Total manufacturing employment in Michigan has increased by over 2.4 percent since President Trump
    was elected rising to 624,200 total employees.
  • Utility rates have been reduced for at least 3.6 million Michigan customers as a direct result of the Tax
    Cuts and Jobs Act signed into law by President Trump last year.

Click Here for the Full Economic Report 


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NMCAPI Bourbon Tasting Event!

Northern Michigan Chapter API  will be hosting an evening of Bourbon tasting and spirit sampling with speaker Kent Rabish, owner of the Grand Traverse Distillery, who will discuss michigan's growing craft distillery industry. 

Date: Thursday November 1, 2018

Location: VFW Hall
408 Hyde St.
Kalkaska, MI 49646

6:00-7:00 pm Cash Bar
7:00-7:30 pm Dinner

Cost: $25.00 per person + $15.00 membership fee if you are not a member yet.

To register, please contact Jan Bell by email at or by phone at (231) 369-3569. 

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Oil and Gas in Michigan Pre-1900


It wasn’t until 1925 that the Saginaw Prospecting Company, headed by James C. Graves, drilled what is considered the state’s first commercial well in Saginaw County. However, the story doesn't start there. As we near the century mark of Michigan’s commercial production of, Doug Elenbaas' presentation titled "A Promoter’s Dream! Michigan’s industry pre-1900" takes a deep drive back into the beginnings of the Michigan Oil Patch, taking a closer look at how projects were promoted and the leasing, drilling and stimulation methods of the time.  


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Pipeline Safety Advisory Board Quarterly Meeting Coverage

Pipeline Safety Advisory Board meets Oct. 15 in Lansing

The Michigan’s Pipeline Safety Advisory Board (PSAB) met and discussed the Enbridge Agreement and its Final Board Report in its quarterly meeting Oct. 15 in Lansing.

The meeting came on the heels of several recent announcements related to the future of Line 5 and an agreement that provides a clear path forward to further protect the Great Lakes while maintaining the critical infrastructure link between Michigan’s peninsulas and protecting families and the real jobs that depend on Line 5 for moving energy to where it’s needed.

The U.S. Coast Guard has enacted a new “no anchor zone” rule in the Straits of Mackinac. This rule follows a set of temporary emergency rules issued by the Governor after an April 2018 anchor strike incident. In addition, recent legislation approved by the State House made anchoring in the Straits a felony. The rule officially prohibits vessels from anchoring over any charted, submerged cable and pipeline within the "no anchor" area unless the crew has received permission from the Captain of the Port of Sault Ste. Marie, or a designated representative.

Gov. Snyder, in his official statement, thanked the Coast Guard and District Commander Rear Admiral Joanna M. Nunan while affirming that "this is one of many critical measures to provide robust short-term protections as we move forward with our long-term plan of putting Line 5 in a utility tunnel and decommissioning the existing pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac."

Earlier this month, the State of Michigan and Enbridge announced a second agreement on Oct. 3 that gave the go-ahead for the State and Enbridge to pursue further agreements related to a Straits Tunnel that could accommodate a replacement for Line 5 under the Straits. A new final agreement is anticipated sometime in November with an opportunity to comment in December. The next meeting of the PSAB will be Dec. 10, 2018, from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in Lansing. The location has yet to be announced.

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Michigan Petroleum Directory Now Available!