A Minnesota state appeals court ruled in favor of the Line 3 pipeline on Monday, upholding key approvals by state regulators. The three-judge panel found Minnesota’s Public Utility Commission did not act improperly when it granted Enbridge permits concerning the route and “certificate of need” for its controversial tar sands oil pipeline expansion. Pipeline opponents are considering an appeal and are focusing primarily on pushing President Biden to halt the pipeline; Gov. Tim Walz (D) was previously reported to be allowing the legal process to play out. “This is the beginning of what’s coming. We’re going to continue to assert our [treaty] rights. Enbridge has no right to come on to our ceded territory and think that they call the shots,” Nancy Beaulieau, a co-founder of the Rise Coalition and an organizer for MN350, told MPR News.
Also Monday, the Supreme Court rejected oil companies’ petition seeking to have lawsuits brought by San Francisco and Oakland heard in federal, instead of California state courts. Oil companies seeking to evade liability for their role in causing climate change and casting doubt on the science have repeatedly sought to have cases brought by states and municipalities heard in federal court where they believe they will receive a more favorable audience. The Supreme Court’s denial of the oil companies’ petition to hear the case comes after it ruled in Big Oil’s favor on a related but narrow procedural question in BP v. Baltimore last month. (Line 3: AP, MPR, Indian Country Today, Star Tribune $, Minnesota Reformer, Duluth News-Tribune, MinnPost, WDIO, The Hill, Reuters, Bloomberg $, Seeking Alpha; Chevron: E&E $, Reuters, San Francisco Chronicle, Bloomberg $, OilPrice, Seeking Alpha)