Energy News Today

Whitmer officials bet on storage, rail transport to weather Line 5 closure

Michigan released a plan Friday meant to help the state weather expected propane shortages after the ordered May closure of Enbridge’s Line 5 through the Straits of Mackinac.

The plan was immediately greeted with criticism by Republican Northern Michigan lawmakers, who said it did little to address the pending propane crisis.

The report recommends companies find other means to transport the heating resource, better ways to store it and measures to protect customers from price gouging when Line 5 is closed. 

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer created the inter-department Workgroup on Propane Energy Security to study changes needed in Michigan’s energy market to absorb the decreased propane supply with Line 5’s expected May closure. 

The 67-year-old pipeline carries about 540,000 barrels of light crude and natural gas liquids, which serves as a propane sources to the Upper and Lower peninsulas. Propane derived from Line 5’s natural gas liquids account for roughly 65% of the U.P. ‘s propane needs and 55% of the state’s overall propane demand. 

The recommendations released Friday are “wholly inadequate” to replace the propane Michigan relies on and would lead to greater environmental risks if the state were to resort to transporting fuel on rail or road, said Enbridge spokesman Ryan Duffy. 

Read More: Whitmer officials bet on storage, rail transport to weather Line 5 closure

2021-03-12 14:58:50

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