LANSING, Mich. (CBS Detroit/AP) — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced on Tuesday that she is voluntarily dismissing her lawsuit against Enbridge and shifting her attention to the 2019 lawsuit filed in state court by Attorney General Dana Nessel.
According to a press release from the Governor’s office, the lawsuit in state court was filed in June 2019 before Whitmer filed her suit in federal court to shut down the Line 5 pipelines that run through the Straits of Mackinac.READ MORE: Detroit Symphony Orchestra Announces Single Tickets For 2022-2023 Season
The state lawsuit was on pause as Whitmer’s federal suit went through the courts.
“While I respectfully disagree, the federal court has now decided to keep the lawsuit I filed in November 2020. I believe the people of Michigan, and our state courts, should have the final say on whether this oil company should continue pumping 23 million gallons of crude oil through the Straits of Mackinac every day,” Whitmer said in a statement. “After today’s action, Attorney General Dana Nessel’s lawsuit, filed in June 2019, should now be able to move forward expeditiously in state court. Our goal here remains the same: protecting the Great Lakes, protecting Michigan jobs, and protecting Michigan’s economy.”
According to the Governor’s office, Line 5 runs with 23 million gallons of oil flowing through every day between Superior, Wisconsin, and Sarnia, Ontario, passing through northern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. It’s part of a network transporting Canadian crude to refineries in both nations.
In November 2020, Whitmer and state Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Director Dan Eichinger issued a Notice of Revocation and Termination of Easement and filed in state court for it to be enforced.READ MORE: Deadline Detroit Co-Founder Says Website Will Shut Down After Sept. 5
The notice requires Enbridge to cease operations of the pipelines.
Officials said Whitmer will not be withdrawing the notice.
“I fully support the Governor in her decision to dismiss the federal court case and instead focus on our ongoing litigation in state court,” Nessel said in a statement. “The state court case is the quickest and most viable path to permanently decommission Line 5. The Governor and I continue to be aligned in our commitment to protect the Great Lakes and this dismissal today will help us advance that goal.”
Enbridge, based in Calgary, Alberta, responded with a federal suit. The company said the line is safe and rejected Whitmer’s May 12 shutdown deadline.MORE NEWS: Oakland County Woman Charged With Impersonating Health Professional
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