Rapid River station tour

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RAPID RIVER, Mich. (WJMN) — Local 3 got inside access to a facility in Rapid River that provides jobs and the propane to heat more than half of the U.P.

Enbridge, an energy transportation company, says they have plans to make a safe pipeline safer.

They want to replace their existing Line 5 dual pipelines at the Straits of Mackinac with an underground tunnel.

” What a tunnel would do for us, is it would take that pipeline out of the water, it would put it 100 feet below the bedrock encased in a 1-foot thick concrete liner, making a line strike of any sort impossible, “says Bob Lehto, Area Manager, at Enbridge.

Once this tunnel is complete they will get rid of the dual pipelines completely.

” We think that the tunnel is the most logical path forward and we’ll continue to work every day to ensure that happens, ” continues Lehto.

While Michigan Attorney General, Dana Nessel, has filed an appeal and a separate lawsuit to have Line 5 decommissioned, politicians like Beau LaFave support Enbridge.

State Representative Beau LaFave says shutting down Line 5 would have severe consequences on the economy.

” Without this facility, people can’t afford to heat their homes. So that means senior citizens move in more nursing homes, which we do not have, it means young families move away from our peninsula, we lose thousands of people, thousands of jobs, and frankly an economic disaster,” says State Representative, Beau LaFave.

Enbridge tells me that 65% of the U.P. is warmed by propane.

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