“Just write the damn checks!”

Jan 27, 2015 by

Happy 2015, everyone! We’re sorry we’ve been away for a while. Since before the holidays, we’ve been attending to some life-matters and over the past few weeks, we’ve been getting back into the swing of a particularly busy new semester. We do have a bit of news to share, however. Interestingly, the always-excellent Dave Hasemyer at Inside Climate News had a new story out last week featuring our friend Dave Gallagher. The story’s focus is on the incompleteness of restoration on the Line 6B replacement, a good companion piece to Rebecca Williams’ excellent Michigan Radio report a couple months back. Unfortunately, Hasemyer’s story doesn’t really take note of the many and varied other lingering issues on the Line 6B project: it’s not just a matter of restoring people’s land: all sorts of other promises that are not...

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Al Monaco, Comedian

Nov 3, 2014 by

Corporate executives say the darnedest things! This week, Enbridge CEO Al Monaco got to have a little sit-down to talk with the Duluth News Tribune–reminding us of the time Enbridge President Steve Wuori got to have a sit down with the Ed. Board at the Lansing State Journal— and causing us to wonder anew why these executives get a special audience with these papers. Why doesn’t the Duluth News Tribune invite, say,  Richard Smith from the Friends of the Headwaters in for some of that friendly shoulder-rubbing? In the interview, Monaco says some pretty hilarious things (the paper calls them “insights”), none more hilarious than his comments about environmentalists: Misperception we’re “fighting environmentalists” “I think maybe there’s a perception that we’re fighting environmentalists. My approach to this has always been, ‘Let us work with you....

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Rover’s Public Engagement Failure

Oct 28, 2014 by

What follows is the first of a couple of comments we’ll be submitting to FERC expressing our concerns about and opposition to the ET Rover pipeline.  In addition to all of the other serious and compelling issues raised by Michiganders, we think it’s important that FERC recognize the failures of its own processes. — October 28, 2014 Ms. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 888 First Street, N.E. Washington, D.C. 20426 Re: Docket PF14-14-000 Dear Ms. Bose I am writing with regard to the Rover Pipeline project (Docket #PF14-14), which is currently at the pre-filing stage. While I share many of the concerns expressed by my fellow southeast Michigan citizens (a very large number of whom have submitted their own comments to this docket) about the lack of necessity of this project, its...

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Enbridge Gets Busted Again

Oct 9, 2014 by

If you’ve been paying attention, you might know that up in Canada Enbridge has been all in a flurry to get their Line 9 pipeline reversal online and running. They’ve gone about it in their typically ham-fisted way, despite the legitimate concerns of lots of Canadians, like our friend Emily Ferguson. (And how did Enbridge respond to those concerns? Why, by making up fictional stories about Emily. Seriously!) Well, last week Enbridge thought they were finally going to get their way– that is until the National Energy Board pointed out that they have failed to meet a basic condition of the project’s approval: installing shut-off valves on both sides of all major water crossings. Just how badly did Enbridge bungle their compliance with this requirement? We’ll let the NEB tell you about it: As noted above,...

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Is ET Rover Breaking the Law?

Oct 4, 2014 by

There’s been a lot of news about ET Rover this week, owing to an unfortunate incident in which their survey crews entered or tried to enter the properties of some landowners without permission, in one case sparking a potentially dangerous confrontation. It’s unfortunate that it’s come to this, though it was also probably inevitable. ET Rover’s ham-handed dealings with landowners have done nothing but fuel the understandable frustration and anger of landowners. We hate to say “we told you so,” but several months ago, we told ET Rover that the industry’s thoughtless routine ways of communicating with landowners were not going to go over well here in southeast Michigan. They clearly did not listen to us. At the center of this week’s story, however, is a legal question that we’ve addressed, though only briefly, before. ET...

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Enbridge’s Latest Dirty Trick

Sep 28, 2014 by

Enbridge is up to some dirty tricks. Before we explain, we need to share something positive. A few months back, we had some fairly serious problems on our property related to pipeline construction that needed to be addressed. After more phone calls and emails than should have been necessary, we finally touched base with our land agent, who took up our concerns, called in the restoration contractors to see what could be done to resolve our problems, and followed through on resolving the issues. Because of those contractors in particular, it turned out to be one of the best, if not the best, experiences we’ve had with Enbridge since this project began. That new restoration contractor is Bowman’s Excavating. A while ago, we’d heard some good things about Bowman’s from some of our fellow landowners. We’re glad to report that we,...

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Enbridge Wants to be Done; They’re Not

Sep 23, 2014 by

The news from Enbridge in Michigan this week is that they’ve finished installing the new Line 6B, wrapping up construction work in the eastern part of the state and beginning restoration. As those of us on Phase One learned, to Enbridge, that pretty much means they think they’re finished: all that matters to them is getting the new pipe in the ground and pumping as much oil through it as possible. That’s where the money is. But Phase Two landowners need to be vigilant about restoration and make sure that it gets done right and to their complete satisfaction. It could take a very long time. We also recommend that landowners not be duped by Enbridge land agents into signing any paperwork releasing Enbridge from its restoration obligations. Believe us, they’ll try. The truth is...

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Breaking News: ET Rover Gets Aggressive

Aug 29, 2014 by

If you read this blog diligently (we know there are precious few of you who do!), you may have noticed recently a fascinating and very troubling conversation in the comments section of our story about the re-route of Rover. There, one of our readers tells of some outrageous strong arm tactics coming from Rover in order to do surveys on landowner properties. What do me mean by strong arm tactics? Well, threats of legal actions, armed guards (we’re not joking!), and some rather unfortunate support from a county sheriff. Here’s the story: Initially the request to survey was denied by several property owners. On the August 22th a certified letter were received by several property owners stating if the enclosed survey consent letter was not returned within 30 days. Legal action would be taken...

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