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Army Stops DAPL Construction To Consider Different Route

by Countable | 12.5.16

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced Sunday that they would halt construction of a section of the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) that would have been near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation and had been the subject of protests for months.

The Corps denied a permit for the construction of the section of DAPL that’s been the subject of protests after it became "clear that there’s more work to do" following discussions with tribal officials concerned about the pipeline affecting the community’s drinking water if the pipeline was breached. Such contamination could also infringe on the tribe’s treaty rights to land on the reservation that were granted it under the 1851 Fort Laramie Treaty.

Rather than routing the pipeline about 100 feet below Lake Oahe in North Dakota as planned, the Corps will now explore alternative routes through "an Environmental Impact Statement with full public input and analysis." The Standing Rock Sioux had previously requested that the pipeline be rerouted.

What’s next?

The Corps will soon begin evaluating new routes to link the nearly-completed 1,172 mile long pipeline, and the environmental impact statement which assesses them will include a public comment period before it becomes final which is sure to gain a lot of attention following the protests.

There is also a possibility that once President-Elect Donald Trump’s administration will take a different view of DAPL than the Obama administration and allow it to be built on its original route. All that would require is the Corps announcing that they had reversed their decision. Trump has expressed support for the pipeline’s completion, though he has not commented on a decision to re-route the pipeline.

Trump has been accused of having a conflict of interest in the matter because of an investment of between $500,000 and $1 million in Energy Transfer Partners, although a Trump spokesman said that his support for the pipeline "has nothing to do with his personal investments and everything to do with promoting policies that benefit all Americans."

In the more immediate term, the Corps announced on November 27 that as of December 5, any protesters occupying on federal land north of the Cannonball River will be trespassing and could face prosecution because of "safety concerns," though they will not be forcibly removed.

— Eric Revell

Photo Credit Flickr user Fibonacci Blue

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(83)
  • Julie
    12/05/2016
    ···

    Protecting our water resources should be is paramount importance. As far as more energy resources are concerned, plant more windmills and solar panels. The oil industry no longer is as important as it used to be -- except for its investors who live in the past.

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  • Sarah
    12/06/2016
    ···

    Protecting our water is a stance that has very long-term impacts. Not protecting water resources will have irreparable, permanent impacts and the only one who win are the corporations. I fully support the rerouting and call on all members of Congress to do so as well.

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  • C3rockstar3
    12/06/2016
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    The DAPL is a threat not only to our waters but also to the precious land that the Native Americans cherish. Take a stand with the people. Stop this pipeline.

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  • Walter
    12/06/2016
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    Invest in renewable power so we can tell the middle East to piss off

    Like (25)
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  • Robert
    12/06/2016
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    Oil needs to stay in the ground, like coal, especially since solar is now cheaper than fossil

    Like (24)
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  • Gianni
    12/06/2016
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    Besides protecting water, native Americans don't want the pipeline because the original route cut through ancient burial grounds. It's common courtesy, no common sense to be respectful to one another as humans. Respectful of culture and respectful of tradition

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  • Cris-Gato
    12/06/2016
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    The best news since the election of the big business orange troll! The scientific management of our resources and the environment are important not only to ourselves but to the future generations of American and the worlds citizens.

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  • Preston
    12/06/2016
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    Absolute farce, when brought before two federal judges (one an Obama appointee) and all the facts were laid out, the protesters had no leg to stand on. So they brought the fight to the court of public opinion were truth and reason could be brushed aside for a more convenient narrative. Water protection? There are already 8 oil/gas pipelines upstream from DAPL I imagine that's the first time anyone's heard that. Indian sovereignty? Two and a half so years in the making and multiple chances to reroute (140 times its been moved in ND alone) and they wait until the pipeline is 90% complete? Environmental protection? Weigh out the difference between a pipeline and train/truck transport. Leave it in the ground? Support alternate energy by buying/supporting it in the free market, not holding companies hostage.

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  • Kelly
    12/06/2016
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    I stand behind this! We need to start thinking about the serious consequences these pipelines have on our environment. This company has not had a clean track record, we can not continue to take steps that will continue to harm our water and our earth. Also, our government has a bad habit of making promises with Native Americans and then breaking them for personal gain. Enough is enough. I expect better our current government to stop repeating history! End this pipeline, leave the land alone, stop making excuses, set better examples for our children. It's time!

    Like (9)
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  • Christina
    12/06/2016
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    We need to invest in alternative energy so that we don't have these issues arise. But in the meantime, ensuring that our water is protected is vitally important as well as the rights of native Americans.

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  • Steve
    12/06/2016
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    "Protecting our water"? Who are these well meaning, albeit clueless, people? Have any of these people seen a map of the vast network of (incident free) oil pipelines which are currently operating in this country? Have they stopped to consider what, in their daily lives, would be possible without oil?

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  • John
    12/06/2016
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    Stop means "stop" right?

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  • Megan
    12/09/2016
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    Please ask what Trump's business dealings are in regards to DAPL. It looks awful.

    Like (7)
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  • Melissa
    12/07/2016
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    Rerouting the pipeline is the correct decision. Do not let big oil literally plow through Native Americans.

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  • Chris
    12/06/2016
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    Absolutely pathetic. It didn't go through "their" land, they were asked about it before construction, and there are already many pipelines throughout the US as well as that area alone that haven't harmed any of the water supply. Public opinion doesn't equate to truth and that is especially accurate when talking about the left's new false narrative that they're trying to push. Hope they go through with the original plan.

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  • operaman
    12/06/2016
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    Don't you wish our Standing Rock Protectors would have acted in a similar manner when the EPA dumped 1.5 million gallons of toxic mine water into the Animas and Colorado Rivers affecting local Indian agriculture and cities using contaminated water containing Chromium, Arsenic and Lead. I guess blinders are supplied by ideological followers of ECO causes. Go ahead my young friends, freeze your ass off, but do remember, frostbite can affect holding that weed or developing hypothermia.

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  • Sam
    12/06/2016
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    "A society is judged by how it treats the most vulnerable." For centuries the United States government has treated Indigenous Peoples as second class humans. It is high time for us -- I speak as a US citizen -- to start acknowledging the atrocities committed and begin the healing of this relationship. Economics nor environmental concerns are of central importance -- this is a matter of treating people like people.

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  • KEvotesATL
    01/25/2017
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    Investing money in a Canadian company so we can destroy our environment just to sell oil to China is not putting Americans first. Our money would be better spent investing in renewable energy so we can be ahead of curve economically, not moving backwards and falling behind. The jobs created by this pipeline are temporary, renewable energy is the future. Also, breaking a treaty with the first real Americans makes you look incredibly untrustworthy to anyone else considering doing business with us in the future. These pipelines are notorious for leaking and causing other environmental problems... why would anyone want this???

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  • Vyrena
    12/06/2016
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    Pipelines are not safe in any way. They have a 100% fail rate.

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  • Hannah
    01/25/2017
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    Please stop the Dakota Access Pipeline. This is a matter of environmental justice and human rights and many many people oppose it. Don't let a president with personal investments in this project push it through for his own financial gain.

    Like (3)
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