Justin Trudeau is “extremely concerned” about the potential shutdown of the Enbridge Line 5 and insists that he still favors direct mediation between the oil company and the state of Michigan.
Trudeau said Tuesday morning that he had already raised the pipeline issue with President Joe Biden directly, but that talks between Ottawa and the Michigan governor have been going on for months, mostly through Canadian Ambassador Kirsten Hillman.
In the face of the impasse and the approaching ultimatum, Prime Minister Trudeau pledged that the government “[…] We continue to participate and express our concerns through the embassy in Washington. ”
Meanwhile, Natural Resources Secretary Seamus Origin Jr. filed a memo to the US federal court on Tuesday to support the ongoing mediation between Inbridge and the state of Michigan, among other things.
The initiative comes at the last minute, as Line 5 could be blocked as early as tomorrow, May 12, the deadline that Mr. Whitmire gave Enbridge to shut down the pipeline.
Minister O’Regan also reveals that the brief “highlights the fact that Line 5 constitutes an essential energy and economic link between Canada and the United States, and expresses Canada’s conviction that the US Federal Court is the appropriate authority to investigate the matter between two parties.”
The summary is the result of coordinated action between Ottawa and the governments of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario and Quebec.
The oil pipeline, which transports about 540,000 barrels of oil and natural gas per day, is crucial to the economy and living conditions of a part of southwestern Ontario, part of Quebec, but also states in the northern United States.
After pressing the issue, Trudeau did not indicate whether he intended to invoke the 1977 transit pipeline agreement with the United States.
“The Conservatives are urgently calling on Prime Minister Trudeau to call on President Biden and invoke the 1977 Transit Pipeline Agreement to ensure that this vital infrastructure remains open,” said three lawmakers in a statement issued by the Conservative Party, including Gerard Deltel.
The closing of the Fifth Line was a campaign pledge by Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer. His concerns are based in particular on the possibility of a pipeline leak into the Great Lakes region.