Enbridge Easement Expansion Plans
Enbridge currently owns an 80 foot wide easement the length of Wisconsin in which it owns and operates four pipelines. The easement was obtained by another pipeline company in 1968 and it runs primarily through private property. Many landowners are not aware of the rights the easement gives to Enbridge over their property.
The 1968 easement cannot fit more pipelines so to add new pipelines Enbridge needs more land. Enbridge will not say how much land they need or on which side of the current easement they plan to expand. Land surveys by Enbridge suggest they will ask landowners for enough property to expand the easement width from 80 feet to 300 feet. Easements are extremely valuable to pipeline companies because they are hard to come by and are in effect for 100 years or longer. It is in Enbridge's best interest to take as much property as possible in a single deal.
Several actions indicate Enbridge is moving forward with plans to approach property owners to expand the easement.
- Begun construction on Line 3 over the Canada and Minnesota border for tar sands oil from northern Alberta to move to Superior, Wisconsin. More oil pumped to Superior means more pipelines are needed to move the oil through Wisconsin.
- Surveyed additional property along the entire pipeline route through Wisconsin.
- In preparation for DNR permitting, gathered archaeological and biological data on landowners' properties.
- Convinced the state legislature to change Wisconsin eminent domain law in Enbridge’s favor.
- Announced to investors their plans for a new pipeline on new land next to Line 61 through Wisconsin.