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So, as some kind of requirement I’m guessing, the Army Corps of Engineers sent out a mailer. Not sure of the distribution and, based on reading it, can’t really tell its purpose. It just seems like another vague, meaningless, government mailer, only differing from those glossy campaign ads in its plainness… perhaps hoping to go unnoticed by the citizenry.

Being a Water Protector involved in the Stop Line 3 movement, I knew there was more to this than it appeared in this simple mailer. If you investigate further, you can read the MUCH LONGER Public Notice available online. It’s a bit more forthcoming…

I urge you to see past the mailer’s spurious nature and take action. It does reference Line 3 but fails to note that the new line will be transporting Tar Sands. It gives some details of the application for permit but seems innocuous with its “temporarily discharge fill material” start. Do they want you to think this is just a temporary thing happening? “No need to worry, Citizen, this is no big deal,” it seems to say. “Go about your business.”

In actuality, the permit being requested is to install a permanent pipeline through wetlands and crossing multiple bodies of water throughout Northern Minnesota. It is a pipeline that would carry Tar Sands oil from Canada, through Minnesota, to make it available for export, likely to China. This is the exact material that, if we’d like to avoid destroying our planet’s ability to sustain human life, needs to remain IN THE GROUND. Even Exxon realized that this material is not worth extracting…

“Exxon has long resisted calls to erase these reserves from its books, insisting that it would dig up the tar sands someday, according to Inside Climate News. When a company erases an investment off the books, it’s effectively saying, “We bought something that’s now worthless.” This isn’t an easy thing to admit. “

2/23/17 article for Grist.com by Nathaneal Johnson

And it is the first of an estimated 5-6 pipelines that Enbridge likely plans to install in the 220′ easement they are requesting from homeowners. A typical pipeline would request 50-75′ of easement for a new pipeline. This Enbridge request clearly appears to be for a new PIPELINE CORRIDOR.

If you go to the website on the mailer, you see:

Project summary

Enbridge Inc. has submitted a permit application for activities affecting water resources associated with the proposed construction of the Line 3 replacement crude oil pipeline across Minnesota, and a nearly one-mile segment in North Dakota. The Corps of Engineers is evaluating the application for (1) construction-related impacts to wetlands, specifically the discharge of dredged or fill material into waters of the U.S.; (2) work in, over or under navigable waters; and (3) crossings of federal projects. …

(1) Construction of the pipeline would temporarily impact more than 1,000 acres of wetlands, and permanently impact 10 acres; if authorized Enbridge would restore all temporarily-affected wetlands to pre-construction conditions and mitigate for permanent impacts

(2) The project proposes crossing 211 water bodies, three of which are considered navigable waters (emphasis mine)

(3) There is a single request to alter the Lost River Flood Control Project, a channel clearing and snagging project, located in Red Lake County, Minnesota

USACE does not regulate the overall construction or operation of pipelines, nor does it regulate the siting of any type of pipeline/utility line or any substance being transported within a pipeline.

Notice how they don’t mention the two crossings of the Mississippi River? Notice the simple reference to “navigable waters”? Again, this appears to be hiding the facts from the public. And THIS is one reason why we need a full Public Hearing regarding this decision.

The website also provides many links, which can keep you busy for hours (if you too dare to commit to a more full understanding of what is happening in our fair state). But the bottom line is that we need EVERY CITIZEN to submit public comment and REQUEST PUBLIC HEARINGS on this decision.

7. PUBLIC HEARING REQUESTS. Any person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a public hearing be held to consider this application. Requests for public hearings shall state, in detail, the reasons for holding a public hearing. A request may be denied if substantive reasons for holding a hearing are not provided or if there is otherwise no valid interest to be served.

US Army Corps of Engineers Public Notice regarding Enbridge’s Permit Request for a New Line 3

It is clear from the overwhelming opposition to Line 3 in the PUC Public Comments (94% of comments opposed Line 3 approval), the stance of faith leaders against Line 3, the DOC and interested party lawsuits against the PUC, the violation of Treaty Rights the pipeline entails, the lack of accountability being required of Enbridge in the current PUC approval, and the continued public outcry and actions that Minnesota does NOT want or need this pipeline. It is clear that the public has not been heeded to date by the PUC… but perhaps the Army Corps of Engineers will be more open to listening. We need to give the public a chance to have their voices heard.

Enbridge would like you to believe that their lines are safe… while they have one of the worst safety records of all the fossil fuel companies. Enbridge would like you to believe they are a good corporate citizen… but ask the people of Marshall. Michigan how well they were treated following the disastrous spill there. Enbridge would like you to believe there will be LOADS of jobs… while in reality, there will be a handful and some say only one permanent full-time position will result from the installation.

Enbridge is known for their lies. They are lying to us now.

Please pay attention to this notice. Please help make an effort to save Minnesota from the invasion of a Tar Sands pipeline through our lovely state.

The website does not much more than the mailer to direct you on how to make comment. But at the very bottom of the 13 page notice, it explains what you can do. NOTE: DEADLINE is January 21, 2019

Interested parties are invited to submit to this office written facts, arguments, or objections within 30 days of the date of this notice. These statements should bear upon the suitability of the location and the adequacy of the project and should, if appropriate, suggest any changes believed to be desirable. Comments received may be forwarded to the applicant. Written comments may be emailed to: CEMVP-L3R-PN-Comments@usace.army.mil Written comments may be mailed to: St. Paul District Corps of Engineers, CEMVP-OP-R 180 Fifth Street East, Suite 700 Saint Paul, MN 55101 1678. To receive Regulatory Public Notices by e-mail, go to: http://mvp-extstp/list_server/ and add your information in the New Registration Box.

Thank you for your support. It’s going to take ALL OF US.