It isn’t easy to assemble the entire Squad in one place, but reportedly it happened today in Minneapolis. The Squad held a press conference to demand that President Biden revoke the permit to construct Enbridge Energy’s Line 3 replacement pipeline. As usual, the activists’ claims are hysterical:
The press conference came days after a letter from the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination requested that the federal government respond to allegations of human rights violations associated with the pipeline construction.
Human rights violations? Good grief. More than 60 Minnesota legislators signed a statement supporting the pipeline:
We are offended the D.C. ‘Squad’, led by Minneapolis Congresswoman Ilhan Omar, is coming to Northern Minnesota to protest and further obstruct a thoroughly vetted, tested, and approved project. Their presence will only serve to incite the obstructionists when it’s clear Line 3 has brought incredible benefits to the state and people. The blatant mistruths in their recent letter to the Biden Administration have already been debunked by union leaders.
Line 3 is one of the most important projects for Minnesota’s future. It will not only modernize and improve safety for the current oil operations, it is also providing jobs and careers for hundreds of workers in Northern Minnesota. The permits are issued, the lawsuits are settled, it’s time to complete the work.
Tomorrow the Squad will travel to Bemidji in northern Minnesota and pontificate further at or near the site of the pipeline. My guess is that they will not meet with a warm reception unless they vet the crowd carefully.
One of the ironies here is that Line 3 will replace an existing pipeline. It incorporates modern anti-leak technologies and will be much better for the environment than the existing line. Nonetheless, Congresswoman Omar deems the pipeline a threat to wild rice:
— Ilhan Omar (@IlhanMN) August 6, 2021
The pipeline is more than 90% complete. Enbridge describes the project and its comprehensive permitting process here. My colleague Isaac Orr wrote this piece supporting the replacement pipeline in 2018, but it remains timely today:
The original Line 3 was installed in the 1960’s, and the Star Tribune notes Line 3 is aging, corroding and operating at just over half of its capacity due to safety concerns.
Enbridge has proposed to build a new pipeline with sophisticated leak prevention technology, as well as technology that allows the company to quickly detect leaks and shut down the pipeline.
Rebuilding this pipeline will be a concrete step toward reducing the potential for environmental damage that is associated with transporting the oil we all depend on. It will also allow Line 3 to transport more oil, more efficiently.
This folks, is called a win-win situation.
The winning could be even better because the new route proposed by Enbridge would reduce the impact on cultural resources of Native American tribes. Moreover, more than 75 percent of the Enbridge’s preferred route follows existing pipelines or electrical transmission lines, meaning the amount of new land being disturbed is minimized. Win-win-win.
The left’s opposition to the environmentally sound and nearly-complete Enbridge Line 3 is one of many instances of its profound lack of seriousness.
UPDATE: It isn’t easy to get to the left of Minnesota’s liberal governor Tim Walz, but the Squad has accomplished that feat. The Walz administration, stung by false claims about Line 3 being made by Squad members, has made public a letter to the Squad and others, signed by the Commissioners of the Department of Natural Resources, the Department of Public Safety, and the Department of Transportation:
The Walz administration also produced an eight-page “claims and responses” documents that covers much the same ground as the letter, but in more detail. Basically, the theme of both documents is that the Walz administration has conducted itself in the most liberal manner anyone could possibly expect. But far-leftists like the members of the Squad can never be satisfied, and have no regard for the truth: