MPCA extends Line 3 comment period, hosts three telephone town halls

Contact: Darin Broton, 651-757-2278

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) today announced it is extending the public comment period for the Enbridge Line 3 project to Friday, April 10. The original deadline for the draft air and NPDES permits and 401 certification was April 3. The extended comment period will still allow the MPCA to review and respond to all public comments and meet the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s current August 15 deadline.

In addition to extending the comment period, the MPCA announced new public comment opportunities that include three 90-minute statewide telephone town hall meetings. The public can call into the telephone town hall, share a two-minute comment and/or listen to other public comments. The comments will be included in the official public record. The telephone town halls meetings are scheduled on the following dates and times:

  • Thursday, April 2, 2020 (2 – 3:30 p.m.)
  • Tuesday, April 7 (6:30 – 8 p.m.)
  • Thursday, April 9 (10 – 11:30 a.m.)

Since the MPCA has postponed or canceled all in-person public meetings and events until at least April 30 due to the current COVID-19 health crisis, the agency is using alternative ways to engage with the public. In addition to the telephone town halls, the MPCA will be releasing an informational web presentation on April 1 as a way to share useful information regarding the draft permits and certification. Specific permit questions submitted via email (line3.pca@state.mn.us) to the MPCA by end of day Sunday, March 29, may be included in the presentation.

The MPCA is also using new web-based technology that allows the public to provide online comments to a specific permit. The agency’s online comment platform gives Minnesotans a better ability to provide comments, regardless of physical location within the state. This new technology also allows the public to see submitted comments in real-time providing a new level of transparency.
 
The public can also submit comments via mail. Additional information on submitting comments using the online forms and mailing instructions are available on the MPCA’s website.