Water protectors remain undeterred as Canadian Line 3 tar sands export pipeline begins operation

Published by Brent Patterson on

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Photo: On November 29, 2016, Prime Minister Trudeau announced his government’s approval of the Line 3 export pipeline.

On October 1, CTV reported: “Enbridge Inc.’s Line 3 pipeline is in service and is expected to transport 760,000 barrels per day at full capacity.”

The Associated Press adds: “Enbridge expects to start running the pipeline at its full capacity of 760,000 barrels per day in mid-October.”

Tara Houska of the Giniw Collective says: “We face years in prison for defending the drinking water of tens of millions downstream from Alberta tar sands oil set to flow through the Mississippi River headwaters, 22 rivers, 800 wetlands.”

Notably she adds: “We are not deterred.”

The Calgary-based Enbridge Inc. tar sands pipeline runs from Hardisty, Alberta to Superior, Wisconsin. It is 1,659 kilometres in length, the majority of which is in Canada with the remaining 585 kilometres in the United States.

Houska notes: “It was given a green light under President Trump and backed by President Biden.”

In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau approved the construction of the pipeline on November 29, 2016, the same day that he also approved the Trans Mountain pipeline now being constructed on Secwepemc territory without consent.

Enbridge has reported that the Canadian portion of the pipeline is complete and began commercial service in December 2019.

The Rainforest Action Network (RAN) has documented that the top five financiers of Enbridge are Canadian banks: TD Bank, Bank of Montreal, Scotiabank, RBC and CIBC. Collectively they have provided billions of dollars in financing to Enbridge.

Significantly, Houska has written: “Rubber-bullet welts spread purple down my arms and back, courtesy of Minnesota police, who have reportedly billed nearly $2 million in security-related costs to a fund set up by Canadian pipeline giant Enbridge.”

She has also previously highlighted: “Enbridge is dumping millions of dollars to incentivize and encourage police officers to repress, suppress and surveil, harass Indigenous people and our allies that are helping us try to stop this pipeline from happening in our treaty territory.”

More than 800 water protectors were arrested since construction of the pipeline began in Minnesota in December 2020.

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