Canadian pipeline giant Enbridge plans to build a new pipeline across northern Minnesota to carry fracked crude oil. The Sandpiper project is a bad idea — bad for the climate, bad for our waters, and bad for treaty rights — and we need to make ourselves heard. This pipeline would establish an entirely new crude oil corridor across Minnesota, and Enbridge has already announced plans to put two more pipelines in this new corridor.
The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is currently considering whether to allow the Sandpiper project to proceed. We need to make sure the PUC sees the strong public opposition that has been growing since the project was proposed. Can you attend a hearing near you?
- Monday, 1/5/15, 2pm: Saint Paul RiverCentre – Ballrooms A and B, 175 West Kellogg Boulevard, St. Paul, MN 55102 (Facebook event)
- Tuesday, 1/6/15, 2pm: Downtown Holiday Inn – Ballroom, 200 West 1st Street, Duluth, MN 55802 (Facebook event) — RALLY AND MARCH BEFORE THIS HEARING: meet up at 12:30pm at Minnesota Power Plaza, 14 W Superior St in Duluth (Rally Facebook event)
- Wednesday, 1/7/15, 2pm: Bemidji State University Hobson Union – Ballroom, 1500 Birchmont Drive Northeast, Bemidji, MN 56601 (Facebook event)
- Thursday, 1/8/15, 2pm: Crookston Inn & Convention Center, Ballrooms 1 and 2, 2200 University Avenue, Crookston, MN 56716 (Facebook event)
- Friday, 1/9/15, 2pm: St. Cloud River’s Edge Convention Center, Herberger Suite, 10 4th Avenue South, St. Cloud, MN 56301 (Facebook event)
In-person testimony will be a big part of these hearings — if you can consider testifying, please do so. Here’s an up-to-date set of Sandpiper talking points to help you plan your testimony. You can also fill out our online RSVP form to get more information and let us know you’re planning to speak.
Many of us went to similar hearings on the Alberta Clipper pipeline back in April. Perhaps you were one of the 1,000 people who showed up for the St. Paul hearing, and you remember how the venue could only hold a couple hundred of us! This time, the PUC is overcompensating by holding the hearings in very large spaces: the St. Paul venue should have room for about 2,000. Let’s show up in even greater numbers this time.
The oil that Enbridge wants to pump through the Sandpiper comes from North Dakota’s Bakken fields, where it is extracted by fracking. Fracking does double damage to the climate because it releases methane (a potent heat-trapping gas) into the atmosphere from deep underground. We know we need to be transitioning to alternative energies very quickly — not burning more fracked oil and dumping more carbon and methane into our atmosphere — and this pipeline would be a 24-inch diameter steel step in the wrong direction. Together, we’ll make sure the PUC hears us.