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UP Republican representatives say fuel tanker spill ‘will become more frequent’ without security of Line 5 pipeline

Representatives John Damoose (R-Harbor Springs), Beau LaFave (R-Iron Mountain) and Greg Markkanen (R-Hancock) criticized the Biden Administration’s review of the Line 5 pipeline plan in a Thursday release.
L to R: Michigan State Representatives Beau LaFave (R-Iron Mountain), Greg Markkanen...
L to R: Michigan State Representatives Beau LaFave (R-Iron Mountain), Greg Markkanen (R-Hancock) and John Damoose (R-Harbor Springs).(Michigan House Republicans)
Published: Jun. 25, 2021 at 10:24 AM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WLUC) - On Thursday night, three Republican State Representatives issued a statement about Line 5 following a fuel tanker spill in Hancock Thursday morning.

Representatives John Damoose, of the 107th House District (R-Harbor Springs), Beau LaFave, of the 108th District (R-Iron Mountain) and Greg Markkanen, of the 110th District (R-Hancock) criticized the Biden Administration’s review of the Line 5 pipeline plan, which has previously gained approval from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE), the state Legislature, and former Gov. Rick Snyder.

Thursday, a fuel tanker truck overturned resulting in a fuel spill that discharged into Portage Canal in Houghton County, causing an environmental incident and unfortunate situation for the nearby residents and Great Lakes.

Public access to beaches and boat launches has been shut down temporarily, and the public has been asked to avoid the affected area for the foreseeable future.

As of Friday morning, clean-up continues in Hancock.

In a release, the three representatives said, “This unfortunate incident in Houghton County earlier [Thursday] will become more frequent if Governor Whitmer and President Biden get their way and shut down the safest means of transporting life-sustaining fuels, Line 5.

“It is quite ironic, and sad, that this accident occurred within hours of the Biden Administration announcing their intention to investigate the pipeline. If today’s events do not highlight the inherent dangers that vehicular transportation of fuels poses, we don’t know what will.

“According to science and data, the safest form of transportation is a pipeline, but radical environmentalists in Lansing and D.C. seem to think they know better.

“Like it or not, gas, fuel, and propane are essential sources of energy for Michigan, Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Ontario, and Quebec. Line 5 has never leaked into the Straits in its 68 years of operation.

“Besides the obvious safety concerns that come with shutting down the pipeline, it will also undoubtedly result in a propane shortage, which is a serious concern for the people in Northern Michigan & Upper Peninsula who rely on this energy to heat their homes and stay alive in frigid [Michigan] winters.

“We will continue pushing back on these types of ridiculous overreach, which only stands to endanger our communities. By downplaying the very real risk of not having enough fuel to heat our homes, the Democrats’ message is that canceling the pipeline is worth more than the lives of rural Michiganders. It’s unacceptable, and we will continue fighting against ideologues who are determined to see their agenda adopted no matter the financial or environmental cost.

“Canadian pipeline company, Enbridge, has pledged a $500-million investment in the Great Lakes Tunnel, providing secure transportation of gas and oil resources. Michigan taxpayers won’t foot the bill. The tunnel will protect the lakes and surrounding land from unnecessary truck spills. Shutting down the pipeline will result in more trucks on roads and increase the likelihood of more spills, exactly like the one today in Houghton County.”

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