Despite billions of dollars of investment in the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency to carry out environmental stewardship duties, the State of Minnesota insists on having the Department of Commerce do the environmental review for the largest fossil fuel infrastructure mega-project in state history. In April 2016, the citizens of Minnesota, the Ojibwe tribes, and the Anishinaabe people asked the Environmental Quality Board to transfer control of the Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Sandpiper/Line 3 pipelines to the environmental agencies, and built a powerful record of testimony documenting the dysfunction of the current process and the DOC's lack of qualifications. In this May 18 meeting, the Environmental Quality Board voted to deny that request. The four citizen board members all voted with the people, but nine of the state's agency commissioners, Governor Dayton's cabinet members, voted against the citizens of Minnesota, our tribal nations, and Mother Earth.
Read Honor the Earth's: Comments in support of request for EQB to change the RGU for Sandpiper/Line 3 pipeline project Environment Impact Statement, from PUC/DOC to PCA and/or DNR (click here)
Winona LaDuke, Executive Director of Honor the Earth, testified on behalf of the 1855 Treaty Authority and the Native American people who have been marginalized in the decision-making process for years.
"Asking the Department of Commerce to conduct an Environmental Impact Statement is like asking a baseball player to perform brain surgery. They have no capacity and we deserve better,” LaDuke said. “It is baffling that the State of Minnesota would waste its recent multi-billion dollar investments in the Pollution Control Agency. Tribal governments continue to be excluded from this process despite the disparate impact of these projects on Anishinaabe people, but ultimately the tribal issues in this case are outside the jurisdiction of the State of Minnesota."
The Honor the Earth team (Winona LaDuke, Korey Northrup, Don Wedll, and Thane Maxwell) testified at the MN Environmental Quality Board meeting May 18th 2016.
Governor Dayton's Cabinet Members
9 MN State’s Agencies Voted Yes in Favor
- David Frederickson, EQB Chair - Commissioner (Department of Agriculture)
- Brian Napstad, EQB Vice Chair - Chair (Board of Water and Soil Resources)
- Mike Rothman - Commissioner (Department of Commerce)
- Charlie Zelle - Commissioner (Department of Transportation)
- Tom Landwehr - Commissioner (Department of Natural Resources)
- John Linc Stine - Commissioner (Minnesota Pollution Control Agency)
- Matt Massman - Commissioner Department of Administration
- Shawntera Hardy - Commissioner (Department of Employment and Economic Development )
- Tom Moibi
- ABSENT Dr. Ed Ehlinger - Commissioner (Department of Health)
- ABSENT Adam Duininck - Chair Metropolitan Council
4 - Citizens Board Members Voted Not in Favor
- Kristin Eide-Tollefson
- Julie Goehring
- Kate Knuth
- John Saxhaug
Chi-miigwech to these citizen board members for their vocal and passionate support in the face of blatant negligence by the State of Minnesota!