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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Dale Lueck (R)

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Legislative update

Friday, October 1, 2021

Dear Neighbor,

It’s been eight long years, but oil is beginning to move through the Enbridge Line 3 replacement pipeline. That sets the stage for decommissioning old Line 3, which is about 60 years old and operating at reduced capacity due to safety concerns. The federal government ordered old Line 3 be replaced quite some time ago.

New Line 3 is a big win for the environment; the replacement line is constructed of new, much heavier-duty materials. The new route eliminates the many miles of old Line 3 that currently parallel the Mississippi River. Today’s route is much farther from the river. When it crosses the Mississippi, it is perpendicular and buried deep under the riverbed.

The project also accommodated the tribal governments that had portions of old Line 3 on their reservation. In the case of the Leech Lake Tribal Government, the new route no longer includes transmitting through their reservation. In the case of the Fond du Lac Tribal Government, the old Line 3 route was continued at the expressed wish of the tribal government.

Many of the pipeline workers will be moving on to new projects across the Midwest. Just like our folks that build and repair our highway systems, they have to go where the work is. We appreciate their patience and willingness to persevere in the face of the sometimes nasty and threatening protesters from outside our area and the state.

With two new pump stations, one near Hill City and the other near Floodwood, new good paying permanent jobs now exist today. Many of local folks including tribal members had the opportunity to work on this pipeline project and have opened new career opportunities.

From a safety standpoint, the concern of crude oil unit trains passing through our local towns 24/7 almost hourly has ended. In Deerwood, Aitkin, McGregor, Brainerd, and Tamarack, we have schools, court houses, fire department, nursing homes, city halls, water towers and apartment houses, all located close to the rails and would be at great risk from a crude oil unit train accident.

The new infrastructure will also buy down property taxes for our local residents, greatly benefiting our counties, townships and school districts through which the 337 miles of pipeline pass. It’s a good day for our environment, our local economy and northern Minnesota.



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