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Four tribes to take part in controversial Line 5 permitting process

work being done under Mackinac bridge

Four tribes can now participate in the Line 5 permitting process, after a ruling from a state judge last week.

The move comes as the energy company Enbridge wants to put a replacement section of the pipeline in a tunnel under the Straits of Mackinac.

Bay Mills Indian Community Tribal Chairman Bryan Newland says the pipeline infringes on the tribe’s right to fish in the Great Lakes.

Those rights are protected under a treaty with the U.S. government that’s nearly 200 years old.

“It is really hard to maintain the right to fish in waters that have been polluted by an oil spill.”

Newland says his tribe now plans to legally challenge the company’s application.

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