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Straits of Mackinac Bridge. (Image: Glenn Simmons via Flickr)

Contractors get more time for straits pipeline study plans

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Contractors are getting an extra week to submit proposals to the state of Michigan for studies about underwater oil pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac.

A state task force last year proposed independent analyses of risks posed by the twin pipelines, operated by the Canadian company Enbridge. The lines carry about 23 million gallons of oil daily beneath the straits, where Lakes Huron and Michigan meet.

The lines were laid in 1953. Enbridge says they’ve never leaked, but environmentalists want them removed.

The task force also wants an analysis of alternatives to the lines, such as constructing new pipes that wouldn’t cross open water.

Contractors had been given until April 11 to turn in study proposals. But the Michigan Agency for Energy says they’ll now have until April 18.

In related news, Study: Straits of Mackinac oil spill could affect vast shoreline areas.

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