Army Corps illegally approves DAPL despite its threat to tribal drinking water

Dakota Access

Following President Trump’s statements urging the project to go forward, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has given the go-ahead to the hotly contested Dakota Access Pipeline. Since last summer, thousands of activists from around the country have camped near the proposed site in solidarity with the Standing Rock Sioux. The tribe worries that the pipeline will contaminate its drinking water and desecrate sacred burial sites. In December, the Obama administration temporarily suspended the project until a full analysis of the environmental, social, and economic impacts could be conducted. That review process provides an opportunity for the tribe—as well as stakeholders and the public at large—to offer their input. Last week, however, President Trump issued an executive memorandum fast-tracking Dakota Access, and the Army Corps has followed through. Today’s easement shuts down the environmental review process and allows the construction of the pipeline’s final 1.5-mile section to resume. This means that oil could begin flowing under Lake Oahe within 60 days. The Standing Rock Sioux and its supporters will return to court to fight this violation of the law—a violation that threatens the climate, land, clean drinking water, and hard-won sovereignty of the tribe.

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