Good news on the pipeline front. Marathon, partner in the Sandpiper Line that’s proposed to run from western MN to Superior, WI, has announced it is backing 0ut.  That leaves Enbridge left to build a pipe with nothing to carry. It probably means the end of Sandpiper.

Marathon cited the long permitting process in MN. Friends of the Headwaters, a small group of citizens in northwestern MN can be credited with establishing a “long permitting process” by insuring a “thorough permitting process” by demanding, via a law suit, that a full environmental impact statement [EIS] be conducted for the line.

It is time to celebrate and express gratitude to the folks at FOH, Honor the Earth, Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy and MN350 and anyone who has put their shoulder to the wheel on this. However, Marathon will continue to pursue getting oil from North Dakota to Chicagoland and the Gulf of Mexico – they’ve already announced an alternative strategy – and Enbridge is still intent on moving Alberta tarsands to market.

So, there is plenty of work before us: stop extreme extraction, stop the release of massive amounts of carbon into the atmosphere; reuce the risks to water, land, habitat and wildlife in Alberta and the headwaters of the Mississippi.

But, today calls for celebration and gratitude.  Let’s do it.