Silence is not leadership

Reading the tea leaves, it seems Gov. Walz is a Line 3 backer

Gov. Tim Walz has bobbed, weaved, dithered, and ducked through his first term in office, avoiding taking a stand on the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipelines. After the coronavirus, it’s one of the most consequential issues of his tenure.

The pipeline would generate $287 billion in climate damage. It would trench through 79 miles of wetlands. It would cut through state forests. Oil spills would jeopardize northern Minnesota’s clean waters, including wild rice beds. It would violate treaty rights. And by the Minnesota Department of Commerce’s own analysis, Enbridge failed to prove the pipeline is needed.

Yet Walz has given his tacit approval for the project, siding with a Canadian oil pipeline company, international oil shippers, and oil refineries. The project has slid through the state regulatory process with minimal opposition.

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Walz’s Covid contradictions: He tells local businesses to ‘pause’ while approving a foreign company’s construction project

Governor has yet to explain himself

In the wake of increasing coronavirus cases, Gov. Tim Walz last month issued what he called a ‚Äúpause” on “social activities, in-person dining, sports, and fitness establishments for four weeks.”

This week, Walz and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency expedited the approval for Enbridge Line 3, issuing its final permit even though they had three more weeks to decide. This means an influx of two thousand workers — or more — from outside the area, heightening risks of pandemic spread.

During the past two days, Healing Minnesota Stories has called and emailed Walz’s media office and that of Jan Malcolm, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Health, seeking comment on how they viewed the health risks from Line 3 construction crews. Neither has responded.

Minnesota citizens deserve answers from their leaders.

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