Study Looks At Line 5 Effect On Gas Prices

Warnings that shutting down the Enbridge Line 5 pipeline would cause gas prices to go up are not coming to fruition, according to a new analysis. Both legs of the underwater pipeline at the Straits of Mackinac were shut down June 19 by court order due to a damaged pipeline support. The west segment of the line was allowed to restart on July 1. Former Dow Chemical engineer Gary Street researched gas-price data and other factors, and determined the shutdowns had little impact on retail gas prices in Michigan.

“Looking at the national price of gasoline and the Michigan price, our gasoline in Michigan is about three-and-a-half cents less than the national price. So, Line 5 being shut down, or partially shut down, has not affected the price of gasoline.”

An Enbridge spokesperson dismissed the study, saying that while the line is operating at reduced capacity, it’s still meeting demand, which wouldn’t impact gas prices.