CPA Public Affairs

CPA Joins Fight for Line 5's Future

Print Print this Article | Send to Colleague

Several organizations are calling for the decommissioning of Enbridge Pipeline 5, citing environmental reasons, and they have been doing so for years. Built in 1953, the Line 5 Straits of Mackinac Crossing has operated without incident for more than 60 years.

Line 5 runs for 645 miles from Wisconsin, under the Straits of Mackinac, through Michigan to Sarnia, Ontario. It transports light crude oil and natural gas liquids that help to fuel quality of life for people in Michigan. This pipeline plays a vital role in the Canadian propane industry.

Line 5 has passed a rigorous federal safety test, a high-pressure safety test at levels far greater than standard operating procedures, and an independent alternative analysis report commissioned by the State of Michigan has indicated that the line can be safely and reliably operated for the foreseeable future.

The alternative analysis report by Dynamic Risk rules out railroad transportation and remote alternative routes as alternatives. It provides an estimated cost of service delivery for alternatives such as a new trenched crossing or new tunnel crossing, in proximity of the Straits Crossing area. The operating costs of the alternatives or continuing the operation of the existing Straits crossing are the same. According to the report, the incremental cost of these alternatives is negligible, at less than $0.05/barrel and would have no discernible impact to propane supply (page MS3). The report also concludes that Line 5 could operate indefinitely.

However, Attorney General Bill Schuette says he wants to shut it down. As well, protestors received an approval to get a referendum to force the pipeline to be used only for natural gas liquids and are in the process of getting the required 25,000 signatures. If they do, the legislature will still have to ratify it, which is unlikely, according to CPA’s National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) contact.

The CPA is organizing meetings with Member of Parliament Marilyn Gladu, Sarnia-Lambton and with MPP Bailey, Sarnia-Lambton in July. The Association will also be attending an Enbridge meeting organized to provide comments to the Michigan’s Pipeline Safety Advisory Board consultation process and will be submitting comments on members’ behalf.

The CPA is in continuous communications with the NPGA as they are very involved in this issue as well.They recently held a lobby day with their members and this was a key topic of discussion.

For more information on Michigan’s Pipeline Safety Advisory Board, visit Recent media from Enbridge on Line 5 includes: The Line 5 debate: ‘Step back, take a deep breath and look at the facts, and Enbridge’s Statement on the Line 5 Alternative Analysis Report. The CPA will be providing comments and we encourage you to provide yours on the Alternatives Analysis for the Straits Pipeline by clicking here.

For questions or for more information, please contact Allan Murphy at

Back to CPA Public Affairs

Share Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn