FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Nick De Leeuw, Resch Strategies
November 24, 2020 [email protected], 517-575-9564
Great Lakes Michigan Jobs Coalition Praises Legal Challenge to Protect Michigan’s Jobs, Lakes, Energy Supply
Move by Whitmer Administration to Shut Down Line 5 will Kill Jobs, Increase Energy Costs
Lansing, Mich – Members of the Great Lakes Michigan Jobs Coalition today applauded a move by Enbridge to protect Michigan’s jobs, the Great Lakes, and the state’s energy supply. The company today filed a legal challenge to a recent move by Governor Gretchen Whitmer to revoke the easement allowing Line 5 to operate, and to shutdown the pipeline, killing thousands of jobs and sending energy prices soaring during a global pandemic.
“Good paying jobs are more important than ever in Michigan right now,” said Geno Alessandrini, business manager for the Michigan Laborers Union. “Today’s court action is great news for Laborers who count on Line 5 and the Great Lakes Tunnel project for a paycheck and for affordable energy.”
Said Mike Alaimo, Director of Environmental and Energy Policy at the Michigan Chamber of Commerce: "We're grateful today for the important steps being taken in court to protect Michigan's energy supply, and the access to affordable energy Michigan businesses and their employees count on. Governor Whitmer's move to close Line 5 would devastate local communities who rely on the Line for jobs, for energy, and for millions in tax revenue. Line 5 is safe, and there's a plan to make it even safer by burying it deep below the lakebed. Instead of shutting the line down, let's build the Great Lakes Tunnel."
Majorities of Democrats, Republicans and Independents support construction of the Tunnel, believe it’s the best solution for Line 5, and want the state to move forward immediately with permitting for the project, according to a poll conducted this autumn by TargetPoint Consulting.
The Great Lakes Tunnel will move a portion of Line 5 out of the water in the Straits of Mackinac and place it into a state-of-the-art tunnel buried deep below the lakebed, providing multiple layers of protection and, according to an analysis by the state of Michigan, make the chances of a leak into the Straits virtually zero.
“Governor Whitmer has no apparent alternative plan to replace the energy Line 5 provides,” said Mark Griffin, President of the Michigan Petroleum Association and Michigan Association of Convenience Stores. “We feel this is not only irresponsible during a pandemic, but another disservice to Michigan residents, hospitals and businesses. The court action taken today by Enbridge is about fighting for more than just a pipeline. It’s a fight for Michigan’s families.”
Said John Dulmes, Executive Director of the Michigan Chemistry Council: “Today’s court action is a welcome step to protect Michiganders’ fuel supply and access to affordable energy for their homes and businesses. An irresponsible shut-down would not only impact the price of gas and propane and the raw materials for countless everyday products, but would also strain the logistics needed to move critical goods throughout our state and region."
Said Mike Johnston, Vice President of the Michigan Manufacturers Association: “Shutting down Line 5 would kill thousands of jobs in Michigan, and devastate the state’s manufacturing industry in the middle of a global pandemic. Today’s court filings are about more than keeping Line 5 open. They’re about protecting Michigan families’ access to affordable energy and good paying jobs.”
Leading Michigan voices from labor, business and industry formed the Great Lakes Michigan Jobs coalition, to back the Tunnel project, and to protect Michigan’s jobs, environment, and energy supply.