Enbridge gets another shot at L3RP, as Minnesota regulators restart review process
Regulators in Minnesota have given state’s Department of Commerce 60-days to revise its environmental impact statement (EIS) for Enbridge’s planned Line 3 Replacement Project (L3RP).
The Public Utilities Commission is asking for further details on what impacts a potential pipeline spill would have on the Lake Superior watershed, as per a June court decision that deemed the existing spill model to be incomplete. Although the current EIS does consider spills at several sites along the pipeline route, none were located in the Lake Superior watershed.
The Public Utilities Commission has now resumed the L3RP review process, which will be followed by more public consultations. The restart follows a recent decision by the Minnesota Supreme Court that squashed additional legal challenges against the project.
Final state approvals are not expected until early next year, at best. Enbridge had hoped to get the last sections in Minnesota completed by the end of 2020, but has yet to provide a revised construction timeline. L3RP segments in Canada and Wisconsin are already complete.
Once the entire line has been replaced, Western Canada's crude export capacity will increase by 370,000 bbl/day.