Controversial Dakota Access Pipeline gets approval

Stakeholder says DAPL to start work in second quarter of 2017 despite ongoing legal battle

Stephen Yang Reuters

The crossing under Lake Oahe is the final big chunk of work on the pipeline that would carry North Dakota oil to IL.

Energy Transfer Partners spokeswoman Vicki Granado confirmed in an email to The Huffington Post that the company had begun drilling. The conflagration over energy infrastructure in North Dakota has been part of a national movement by environmentalist and others on the political left to keep fossil fuels in the ground. Clashes between those demonstrators and law enforcement in North Dakota were violent at times, and almost 700 people were arrested.

On Wednesday, Trump said he did not receive any indication that anyone opposed the pipeline's completion.

Two days ago, Motherboard followed up with the news that its environmental impact would not be reviewed, and the Army Corps of Engineers approved a permit to complete the pipeline's construction under Lake Oahe.

Like Dakota Access, the Keystone XL Pipeline had been the subject of environmental concern from activists, residents and indigenous tribes who anxious that the pipeline would pollute as many as 2,500 aquifers.

"The Lakota people believe that the mere existence of a crude oil pipeline under the waters of Lake Oahe will desecrate those waters and render them unsuitable for use in their religious sacraments", according to the filing Thursday. He took exception to the former Obama cabinet secretary alleging that the Corps earlier in the regulatory process did not engage the Sioux Tribe, and he disagreed with her references to the project backers earlier avoiding the Bismarck area after public pressure from local citizens there. But that was before President trump took office.

Demonstrators on Wednesday held a rally in downtown Los Angeles, then marched through the streets in opposition of the Dakota Access oil pipeline. Obama's administration blocked that project in 2015.

On Wednesday, some 350 people also converged in lower Manhattan, hoisting signs such as "Water is Life, ' "Dump Trump" and 'Respect Native Sovereignty". "We're going to have a march here in D.C. on March 10".

"The drinking water of millions of Americans is now at risk".

The recent decision by the Corps represents a major setback to activists who had traveled from across the country and even internationally to gather in solidarity on the Standing Rock reservation to protest the construction of the $3.8 billion pipeline. "Rise with Standing Rock". That section is the last major hurdle standing in the way of the line's completion. But environmental groups, including the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, Amnesty International USA, the Center for Biological Diversity and the Indigenous Environmental Network, issued statements saying the Trump administration is putting corporate profits ahead of the rights of Native Americans and the environment.

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