Water protectors donning masks gathered at a pump station outside of Vassar, Michigan on Tuesday and chanted \u0022stop Line 5\u0022 as an unidentified activist crawled under a fence then used a pipe wrench to close a valve of Enbridge\u0026#039;s oil pipeline.\r\n\r\n\u0022Out of fear for our lives we shut down Line 5.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe protest, which featured a punk rock performance, was livestreamed on Facebook. MLive reports that activists called Enbridge in advance of the action and company officials \u0022confirmed they opted to shut down Line 5 out of an abundance of caution for communities, first responders, and the protesters themselves.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe action came in response to Enbridge\u0026#039;s ongoing refusal to abide by Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer\u0026#039;s directive to shut down Line 5 by May 12, and Attorney General Dana Nessel\u0026#039;s efforts to force the Canadian company to comply—a dispute that is being sorted out in U.S. court and now involves Canada\u0026#039;s government invoking a 1977 treaty to keep oil flowing.\r\n\r\n\u0022Water is life,\u0022 the valve turner said in a lengthy statement highlighting Indigenous opposition to the controversial pipeline. \u0022We are here to protect the water, land, and air that support all life, including our own. Line 5 poses an immediate threat to our lives and these actions are taken out of necessity and in self-defense.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022Enbridge has no legal right to operate this pipeline and the continued operation of Line 5 is an imminent threat to my life, and the lives of an untold number of other people and living beings,\u0022 the activist added. \u0022All other routes have been exhausted, Enbridge has been operating the pipeline illegally since May 12th, and direct action must be taken to enforce the governor\u0026#039;s order and begin healing the Mother Earth.\u0022\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nEchoing that message, Lillian Ellis, a nonbinary transgender person who goes by peatmoss, told MLive that \u0022out of fear for our lives we shut down Line 5.\u0022\r\n\r\n\u0022We felt our lives are in immediate peril from an oil spill,\u0022 peatmoss said. \u0022It feels like we are on the edge of global climate collapse, and we needed to take action to stop it.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe 28-year-old—who declined to identify the valve turner—said that law enforcement detained them and two others after most of the protesters left the area. The activist added that they were prepared to be arrested and face criminal charges for the action.\r\n\r\nEnbridge representative Ryan Duffy told MLive that Tuesday\u0026#039;s action \u0022was not a lawful protest\u0022 but rather \u0022a criminal activity that put people and the environment at risk\u0022 and that the company supports the prosecution of the people involved in the shutdown.\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\nLine 5 transports up to 540,000 barrels of light crude oil, light synthetic crude, and natural gas liquids each day. It splits into two parallel pipelines beneath the Straits of Mackinac.\r\n\r\nOpponents of the pipeline\u0026#039;s ongoing operation argue, as Lana Pollack wrote in March, that it \u0022poses an imminent threat to the shared waters that millions of Canadians and Americans depend upon for life, agriculture, commerce, and recreation.\u0022\r\n\r\nThe Canadian company behind the operation is also responsible for Line 3, a controversial tar sands pipeline that has provoked Indigenous-led protests in Minnesota resulting in hundreds of arrests.\r\n\r\nIndigenous and climate leaders are pressuring President Joe Biden to shut down both Line 3 and Line 5, highlighting his campaign pledges regarding treaties and the planet.