Judge Declines to Dismiss Lawsuit Targeting Clear Skies Ordinance

Aug 26, 2017

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) - A federal judge has rejected a request by the city of South Portland to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the Portland Pipe Line Co. over the city's so-called Clear Skies law.

The city ordinance effectively bans the pipeline operator from reversing the flow of pipeline to ship 100,000 barrels of Canadian crude oil daily to South Portland. The pipeline was originally created to ship heating oil north to refineries in Canada.

City Manager Scott Morelli tells the Portland Press Herald  that he expects the judge to rule on the merit of the company's claim in the next few weeks.

The Clear Skies Ordinance was adopted after residents worried that oil from Canadian fracking could be shipped through Maine. It bans the loading of crude oil onto tankers.