Judge orders Enbridge, tribe to form emergency pipeline plan

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Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 2:18 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A federal judge has ordered energy firm Enbridge Inc. and an American Indian tribe to come up with a emergency plan to prevent potential oil spills from a pipeline running through the tribe’s reservation.

The Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa sued Enbridge in 2019 to force the company to remove a section of pipeline that runs through their reservation in northern Wisconsin.

Enbridge has agreed to the reroute.

Wisconsin Public Radio reports that U.S. District Judge William Conley said in an order Monday that the risk of a significant rupture in a portion of the line that runs through the reservation exists.

He ordered the company and tribe to reach an agreement on emergency measures to avoid a spill.

Enbridge issued a statement on the judge’s decision Monday.

“The judge has told the parties to meet by December 17 and work out a plan for reasonable remediation projects, the installation of emergency valves on the reservation, as well as an appropriate plan for shutting down and purging Line 5 if the meander worsens,” company spokespeople wrote. “We look forward to meeting with the Bad River Band to discuss these issues. In the meantime, the Line 5 pipeline will continue to safely operate.”