Carlton County agrees to support adjusted Enbridge plan


Enbridge Energy has agreed to adjust its proposed route for a new $2.6 billion oil pipeline that will run from the Bakken region in North Dakota through northern Minnesota.

The pipeline would transport between 225,000 and 375,000 barrels of crude a day.

WDIO reports that the Carlton County Board of Commissioners voted 4-0 to back the new proposed route for the Sandpiper Pipeline. The pipeline would run mostly along existing utility right-of-ways in eastern Carlton County.

Enbridge's initial proposal drew opposition from some farmers and others, but the change came after Board Chairman Robert Olean met with Enbridge officials.

MPR News reports that in an application filed last week with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission, Enbridge laid out a preferred route that crossed the land of several organic farmers in the county. The company will now prepare a supplemental filing to specify the new route, however that filing cannot be made until the PUC rules on the original application.

The company has been moving the project along as more than half of the oil coming out of North Dakota is being moved by rail, and the current network of pipelines that move Bakken oil is straining to keep up with supply.

The 610-mile Sandpiper Pipeline would transport crude oil from western North Dakota to Superior, Wisconsin. The oil then would be sent to refineries in the U.S. and Canada.

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