Gov. Snyder pushes for Line 5 Pipeline as term end nears

LANSING — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder hopes to use the final weeks of his tenure to lock in a deal allowing construction of a hotly debated oil pipeline tunnel beneath a channel linking two of the Great Lakes, a plan his successor opposes but may be powerless to stop.

The Republican and his team are working on several fronts to seal an agreement with Canadian oil transport giant Enbridge for replacing the underwater segment of its Line 5. The pipeline carries oil and natural gas liquids between Wisconsin and Ontario, and traverses northern Michigan.

Legislation to be considered during a lame-duck legislative session would designate the Mackinac Bridge Authority as the tunnel’s owner. Gov.-elect Gretchen Whitmer has criticized the tunnel plan, as has fellow Democrat Dana Nessel, the incoming attorney general.