Anishinaabe Tribal members protest Line 5 in Mackinaw City
Anishinaabe Tribal members led a protest of Line 5 today in Mackinaw City.
It comes as Enbridge Energy continues to operate the oil and gas pipeline a day after Governor Whitmer ordered it to be shut down.
The demonstrators made a two mile march this morning from Mackinaw City to McGulpin Point, where Enbridge has a pumping station.
Hundreds of demonstrators gathered around a barbed wire fence and posted a symbolic eviction notice.
Sean McBrearty, a member of the environmental group "Oil and Water Don’t Mix", read the notice to the demonstrators.
“Concerned citizens of Michigan direct Enbridge, a foreign oil company, to immediately abandon operating Line 5 pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac," McBrearty said.
One protestor, Beth Wallace, came up from Battle Creek, near the site of a 2010 Enbridge oil spill which pumped about a million gallons of crude in the Kalamazoo River.
“The river was closed down for years – no one could even touch that river," Wallace said. "If you can imagine that happening [in the Straits of Mackinac], it’d destroy our economy immediately and for years to come".
Michigan GOP lawmakers are frustrated with the Governor’s order, saying that shutting down Line 5 isn’t realistic.
State Representative John Roth from Traverse City calls Governor Whitmer’s attempts to shut down Line 5 the wrong move, and that it would have a big impact on jobs and resources throughout the state.
Enbridge Energy says they will continue to run the pipeline for now.