I am a life-long resident of Northern Wisconsin. I grew up in Bayfield County and have lived in Ashland County for 16 years. I work here. My wife and I are raising our two kids here. I am an avid hunter and fisher and believe our natural environment should be preserved and protected. In short, I care deeply about my community.
I am a private person, and I do not often do something as public as write to the local press. After reading negative story after negative story about Enbridge’s proposed Line 5 pipeline reroute project, I felt compelled to speak out.
Despite what I am reading in the news and on social media, the Line 5 reroute has broad support from those most directly impacted by the project. My property is located along the Line 5 reroute, and I agreed to have the pipeline on my property. In fact, all the landowners along the reroute voluntarily agreed to have Line 5 go through their land.
Why would I agree to have a pipeline on my property? I did so because I firmly believe the Line 5 reroute is the best option for our community, the environment, and our local economy.
I am a proud member of the Wisconsin Operating Engineers. Operating Engineers operate the heavy equipment necessary to build our roads, bridges, schools, and other critical infrastructure. Based on my years in the construction industry, I know that study after study shows that transporting products through pipelines is safer than alternatives, like trucking.
The volume of product being transported through Line 5 would take 90 tanker trucks an hour or 2,100 trucks every day—trucks that would travel along Highway 2. Just last year a tanker truck went into the ditch along Highway 2 and spilled product. I certainly do not want another 2,100 trucks a day going through my community. Do you?
I am confident that Enbridge’s construction techniques and mitigation measures and the DNR’s permit requirements will protect not only my land during construction, but our entire community for years to come.
Finally, COVID-19 has hit the Northern Wisconsin economy very hard. Even before COVID-19, our economy struggled to grow. The Line 5 reroute project will employ 700 people, many of whom will be our neighbors. We need projects like this to boost our economy and convince our young people that Northern Wisconsin is someplace they should stay when they get older.
I wanted to let my elected officials and the public know that many of us in this community support the Line 5 reroute project.