Peters touts bill banning oil tankers on Great Lakes

Sep 30, 2015

Sen. Gary Peters

Michigan's U.S. senators have unveiled legislation they say will protect the Great Lakes from oil spills.

The bill would require a review of all pipelines in the Great Lakes region, plus it would ban transporting crude oil on tanker ships. That's something that doesn't happen at all right now, but Sen. Gary Peters says it could be a threat in the future.

"This has been a possibility that's being discussed," Peters says. "It has not been done up to this point because people frankly believe that it's just unacceptable."

The bill is partially a response to widespread concern over the 60-year old oil pipeline that spans the Straits of Mackinac.

Peters says he may work to remove Enbridge's Line 5 in the future, but first he needs more information about the risk posed by the pipeline.

"We're going to be asking the National Academies to look at alternatives to having a pipeline going through the Straits of Mackinac," Peters says. "We still need some additional information before you can make some of those legal moves to stop a pipeline."

This legislation would get that information, Peters says.