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Judge OKs Enbridge Line 5 for now but ‘must cease’ on Bad River land by June 2026

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A U.S. judge said Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) can keep operating the Line 5 pipeline through an indigenous band’s territory in Wisconsin for now, but operations on that property “must cease” on June 16, 2026, Canadian Press reported Monday.

Enbridge (ENB) had asked for clarification from Wisconsin district court Judge William Conley on his order giving the company just three years to relocate that section of the pipeline.

“Enbridge’s understanding is generally accurate” that it can continue to operate Line 5 “on the parcels for which it lacks a valid right of way,” provided the company abides by the order to share the profits with the band, but “operation of Line 5 on those parcels must cease on June 16, 2026,” the judge wrote.

The three-year window may be too close for Enbridge’s (ENB) comfort, as the company has said the timing for rerouting the pipeline depends on approval decisions from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which is not expected in 2025; at that point, relocating the pipe is expected to take about a year.

Enbridge (ENB) said it disputes the judge’s finding that the company is trespassing, and it intends to appeal the decision, and may seek a stay of the order pending that appeal.

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