Northland Mayors unite to support Enbridge Energy

By KBJR News 1

March 20, 2014 Updated Mar 20, 2014 at 7:06 PM CDT

Superior, WI (NNCNOW.com)--- Superior Mayor Bruce Hagen called Superior the "energy capital" as he stood with Duluth Mayor Don Ness to proclaim their joint support for Enbridge Energy and its proposed pipeline projects in the Northland.

"15 percent of all the imported oil passes through Superior Wisconsin, 15 percent that comes through America that serves industry, business and homes, utilities and so forth across the nation. I think that's an honor, I think it's a privilege, I think that's a successful relationship we've been able to have in the Twin Ports," said Mayor Bruce Hagen.

There has been an increase in crude oil flowing to Superior, leading to two new storage tanks and pipeline upgrades at the Superior terminal. Enbridge is also planning to build an additional three storage tanks in Superior. Across the bridge Enbridge is ready to invest five billion dollars on four separate energy infrastructure projects in Minnesota over the next few years. That's something Duluth Mayor Don Ness stands strongly behind.

"When we look at the options on how to move that crude, pipeline in my mind is the safest alternative, as well as requires the least amount of carbon to move the crude across the country," said Mayor Don Ness.

But the Mayors' support doesn't come without opposition.

"we're concerned that the permitting of these projects, support at local levels is moving ahead too quickly," said concerned citizen Alyssa Hoppe.

John Fisher-Merritt, a farmer in Wrenshall is concerned about the new $2-point 6 billion dollar Sandpiper pipeline that could cut through his backyard in Carlton County. He's worried it would damage farm land and the planet.

"I'm concerned at the sort of break neck pace that they're getting the oil out of the ground and putting all the carbon in the atmosphere,"said Fisher Merritt.

Proving that the Enbridge pipelines continue to be controversial.

Enbridge will hold a public meeting Thursday at the Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites in Duluth at 6:30 regarding its Alberta Clipper pipeline expansion.

Written and posted to the web by Raeanna Marnati