OTTAWA — The head of Canada’s Building Trades Unions (CBTU) has issued a plea for Canadian parliamentarians to fight to keep Enbridge’s Line 5 in operation.
On March 18 CBTU executive director Sean Strickland addressed the House of Commons Special Committee on the Economic Relationship between Canada and the United States to discuss the potential cancellation of the easement on Line 5, a release stated.
“Line 5 needs to continue running, uninterrupted, until the Great Lakes Tunnel project, which will make Line 5 even safer, and boost employment in the region, is complete,” said Strickland. “If necessary, the Government of Canada should stand ready to invoke the 1977 Transit Pipelines Treaty to save it.
“Line 5 is a piece in a much larger puzzle, and we to have look at the whole picture. We need a bilateral, U.S.-Canadian energy policy, one that includes workers.”
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has revoked the 1953 easement that has allowed the pipeline to operate and vowed to shut the line down by May.
Strickland noted that President Joe Biden and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently met and laid out a Roadmap for a Renewed U.S.-Canada Partnership.
“The Road Map is a great working document, and now we need to operationalize it to help sustain our existing energy industry and transition the industry, and workers, to a greener future. “A key deliverable of the Road Map needs to be a bilateral U.S.-Canada energy policy that addresses our cross-border energy needs and secures both the U.S. and Canada’s energy future.”
Strickland said he supported the establishment of a task force to examine the future of energy jobs.
“Line 5 is crucial to our economy, and an issue we will continue to advocate for. Line 5 needs to be part of a long-term vision that focuses on building the United States and Canada’s energy future so we aren’t faced with the same hurdles: fighting to save projects or pipelines time and again,” he said.