FACT CHECK: Obama Admin Wanted Line 3 Replacement

CLAIM: Minnesota House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt claimed that the Obama administration had recommend that Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline be replaced.


During President Obama’s second term, the Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency reached a settlement agreement with Enbridge that among other things required that Line 3 be replaced.


In the summer of 2016, Enbridge entered into a settlement agreement with Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency—both led by Obama appointees at the time—to resolve claims stemming from two pipeline spills six years earlier.

As part the agreement, Enbridge agreed to invest over $100 million in new safety measures designed to improve operations and prevent future spills. The agreement also required Enbridge to replace its 1960s era Line 3 pipeline, which provides a vital link between Canadian production areas and key U.S. refining hubs.

“Enbridge shall replace the segment of the Lakehead System Line 3 oil transmission pipeline that spans approximately 292 miles from Neche, North Dakota, to Superior, Wisconsin,” says the consent decree formalizing the terms of the settlement.

“Enbridge shall complete replacement of Original US Line 3 and take Original US Line 3 out of service including depressurization of Original US Line 3, as expeditiously as practicable after receiving required regulatory approvals and permits for new Line 3.”

A company executive later affirmed these terms, telling the Grand Forks Herald that the agreement “requires Enbridge to replace Line 3.”