Given enough time, we could probably hold forth at at much more length about the remarks of Stephen Wuori and Thomas Hodge during their editorial board stops last week. Wuori’s attempt to waive away concerns about the transportation of dilbit, for instance, is ripe for some serious scrutiny, though we’ll just refer you to this recent piece by our friend Anthony Swift, which speaks almost directly to Wuori’s remark about tar sands and corrosiveness.
We’ll let the rest pass for now. But not without a brief final thought or two:
Firstly, we’ll echo a point our friend Beth Wallace made this week: if Wuori and Hodge were serious about addressing concerns citizens have had about this project and serious about having real conversations about Enbridge’s practices, they could have taken their road show down to the Pipeline Safety Trust conference in New Orleans last month and faced landowners, pipeline safety advocates, regulators, and some of their (more responsive) industry peers. But they did not. Instead, unlike almost every other company at the conference, Enbridge sent only a pack of PR sloganeers– a revealing fact, we think.
Secondly, while here in Michigan last week, they also could have taken the time to meet with some real landowners, rather than talking about the easily-dismissed imaginary ones they’ve conjured in their heads. We would have been more than happy to round up a whole bunch of decent people affected by this project for a sit-down conversation. But then Wuori and Hodge would not have been able to control the message the way could in their little newspaper meetings. They would have had to face some of the realities of how their company and its representatives have conducted themselves in Michigan since 2010. And that, we have said time and again, appears to be something Enbridge is completely– stubbornly, intractably, steadfastly– unwilling to do.