Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24From 1999 to 2010, Enbridge pipelines spilled over seven million gallons of crude oil in over 800 different incidents across the United States and Canada. • ENVIRONMENTAL• New and expanded oil pipelines in the Ceded Territories By Esteban Chiriboga GLIFWC Environmental Specialist GLIFWCstaffcontinuetotracktheprogressofnewandexpanded pipelineprojectsintheCededTerritories.EnbridgeEnergyhasproposed to construct a new pipeline called Sandpiper to transport oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to Superior, Wisconsin. Enbridge is also proposing to replace the aging Line 3 pipeline that transports oil from Canada to Superior. Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) are being developed for both pipeline proposals by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) and the Minnesota Department of Commerce (MDOC). After receiving guidance from the Voigt Intertribal Task Force on pipelineissues,GLIFWCstaffsubmittedcommentsduringthescoping phase of the EIS process in Minnesota and Wisconsin. The WDNR has completed the Draft EIS and GLIFWC staff have submitted comments on that document as well. Proposed Enbridge pipelines Sandpiper Line This would be a new pipeline that would transport oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to the terminal in Superior, Wis- consin. This pipeline is the alternative to the Keystone XL pipeline that was rejected by the US State Department. In Minnesota the EIS will analyze impacts along several proposed routes. In Wisconsin this pipeline largely follows the existing pipeline right-of-way from the Minnesota border to Superior (see map). Line 3 replacement Line 3 has been in operation since the 1960’s transporting oil from Canada to Superior. This pipeline is maintained under Enbridge Energy’s long term main- tenance plan. Recently, the amount of oil that moves through the pipeline has decreased because there is concern that the pipeline can no longer withstand the pressure of the oil under maximum operating conditions. Because of the age of this pipeline, Enbridge is proposing to abandon this pipeline and construct a new Line 3 along the same right-of-way. The two options that Enbridge has put forward for analysis in the EIS pro- cess for Line 3 are: a) construct a new pipeline using modern technology, updated environmentalsafeguards,andapplyingcurrentmonitoringtechniques;b)continue using the existing Line 3 and continue maintenance under the long term manage- ment plan. The reduced capacity of the pipeline would be compensated for by using tanker trucks and transporting oil by rail. Major issues of concern Climate change is the primary environmental impact of these pipelines to the Ceded Territory. The DEIS developed by the WDNR states that the oil transported by the new Sandpiper line and the Line 3 replacement pipeline would account for 2.77% of the carbon emitted by the United States. This is a significant amount in light of the large percentage of global emissions that the U.S. generates and the international agreements the United States has made to curb the effects of climate change by reducing carbon emissions. In addition to climate change, the threat of an oil spill is a serious concern in the water-rich Ceded Territories. From 1999 to 2010, Enbridge pipelines spilled over seven million gallons of crude oil in over 800 different incidents across the United States and Canada. The most notorious spill involved a ruptured pipeline that spilled over a mil- lion gallons of heavy crude oil into the Kalamazoo River in the lower peninsula of Michigan in July of 2010. Thirty-five river miles downstream of the spill were closed by the EPA. Cleanup activities at this site continued until 2014 with costs exceeding $675 million dollars. Cleanup efforts were complicated by the heavy crude oil that, when spilled, sank to the bottom of the river and into the sediment. Line 3 replacement pipeline could transport this type of oil and the proposed Sandpiper pipeline could potentially transport heavy crude as well. TheproposedSandpiperpipelinewouldcrossthousandsofriversandwetlands and any spill would cause lasting environmental damage to aquatic environments and the plants and animals that depend on those environments. GLIFWC staff will continue the technical review of EIS documents for the proposed pipelines in cooperation with the natural resource departments of our member tribes. The Final EIS for the Wisconsin section of the pipeline is expected to be finalized by fall 2016. The EIS process in Minnesota is expected to be com- pleted in 2017. Back Forty brought to the front Water resources, Menominee River adjacent to planned sulfide mine Mining has been a contentious topic for quite some time in Indian Country. It certainly doesn’t take rocket science to understand the potential implications of these large-scale projects. Tribal members, much like anyone else, have the right to a clean and livable environment. Of course mining yields resources that are widely utilized in everyday life, however, many tribes and communities are asking if it’s really worth the health of the surrounding environment. Currently, a company known as Aquila Resources, a Canadian exploration company, has submitted a partial permit application to get the ball rolling on an open-pit sulfide mining operation, located along the Penokean Volcanic Belt in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. According to Aquila Resources, the Back Forty Project has already invested more than $70 million in this endeavor alone. Their research has shown that the proposed mine site contains extensive deposits of gold, zinc, copper, and silver. The potential ore mining operation will deal with rock that is highly reactive with considerablepotentialforacidrockdrainage,whichwillperpetuallyresultinfuture water monitoring even after the project is completed. Speaking of nibi (water), the Back Forty Project depth will exceed 700 feet in depth. The potential for groundwater contamination and decreased water levels of surrounding water bodies such as wetlands, lakes, and rivers from pit dewatering are big concerns. The project proposal has the pit boundary located less than 150 feet from the Menominee River’s edge and discharge of treated water will flow directly into the river. Ironically, the Menominee River has received $28.6 million of Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funding through the EPAfor the cleanup and restoration of this critical sturgeon spawning and rearing habitat. Much like other mining companies, Aquila is promoting the idea of stimu- lating economic growth in the area and supporting local and state infrastructure. In addition complying by all State and local regulations to ensure environmental longevity is at the forefront of their application. “Reclamation and returning the land to a naturally appropriate and useful state is an important part of mining and a top priority for us,” states Aquila Resources. However, many local residents and neighboring tribes feel otherwise. The proposed mine is located in the middle of a culturally significant hub for tribal communities. The Menominee Nation regards this area as the root of their exis- tence.The mouth of the Menominee River is considered to be the origin of creation for the Menominee people as the five ancestral clans were created in this area. Likewise, several mounds and ancient garden beds reside in the proposed mining site. The Menominee Nation Tribal Government, located in Keshena, Wisconsin passed a formal resolution in opposition of this project. By Dylan Jennings, Staff Writer (see Back Forty Project, page 19) PAGE 11 MAZINA’IGAN FALL 2016