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Dakota Access Pipeline Is Back On, Skipping Environmental Review

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: corruption, dishonesty, ethics, freedoms, government, lies, politics, republicans, Army Corps of Engineers, no environmental impact review, DAPL, Standing Rock Sioux Nation )

- 614 days ago -
The Army Corps of Engineers will allow the Dakota Access pipeline to be finished without a standard environmental impact statement.


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RosemaryRannes H (650)
Monday February 13, 2017, 7:00 pm
The Army Corps of Engineers will allow the Dakota Access pipeline to be finished without a standard environmental impact statement.
Update, Feb. 7: A spokesperson for the Environmental Protection Agency sent Motherboard the following statement: "The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) does not have an approval or permitting role in the project. However, under EPA's National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) authority we provided comments in January and March of 2016 to the Army Corps of Engineers regarding its draft environmental assessment for the Dakota Access Pipeline. EPA's comments are part of the public record on this matter."

Without saying more on the matter, the spokesperson directed us to the agency's comments on the Army Corps of Engineer's first environmental impact statement. Last year, the EPA advised the Corps to find an alternate route for the pipeline "that would have reduced potential to water resources, especially drinking water supplies." They also urged the Corps to be "more thorough" with its investigation of environmental threats posed by the Dakota Access pipeline.

The agency spokesperson also noted the Corps chose not to hold a public comment period before posting its final review, as the EPA encouraged it to do.

Today, after months of protests, the remaining portion of the Dakota Access pipeline was greenlit by the Army Corps of Engineers. The Corps approved an easement, or building permit, to finish the 1,170-mile-long pipeline, which will tunnel under Lake Oahe in North Dakota, according to a court filing.

The crude oil conduit has been opposed by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe for more than a year now. Fearing that the pipeline would contaminate their drinking supply and damage sacred cultural sites, indigenous water protectors have attempted to halt the project, which is owned by Energy Transfer Partners.

Last month, the fate of the Dakota Access pipeline was ambiguous when President Trump issued his federal hiring freeze. As we reported, the Army Corps of Engineers was not exempted from the mandate as a defense agency. This meant that staffing issues could have caused it to delay the project.

At the time, it was unclear whether the Corps would proceed with its study of the pipeline's environmental impacts—the agency's second investigation into the pipeline's potential detriments. After the Obama administration said it would not allow the Dakota Access pipeline to be permitted, the Corps agreed to conduct another study and offer the chance for public input.

However, in an executive order last month, Trump urged the Secretary of the Army to consider "whether to withdraw the Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement" for the project. The subtext of this command was clear: fast-track the pipeline at any cost.

In this case, the cost could very well be human health and environmental integrity.

I asked the Army Corps of Engineers to confirm that it had, indeed, bypassed the second environmental impact statement. A spokesperson for the agency sent the following response:

The Department of the Army announced today that it has completed a presidential-directed review of the remaining easement request for the Dakota Access pipeline, and has notified Congress that it intends to grant an easement for a right-of-way across government land at Lake Oahe Dam and Reservoir, North Dakota.

Mr. Robert Speer, Acting Secretary of the Army, announced the decision.

Speer said the decision was made based on a sufficient amount of information already available which supported approval to grant the easement request and as a result, made the choice to terminate the notice of intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement.

"Today's announcement will allow for the final step, which is granting of the easement," Speer explained. "Once that it done, we will have completed all the tasks in the Presidential Memorandum of January 24, 2017."

This action will serve [to] facilitate completion of the last mile and a half of the 1,172 mile pipeline, connecting the Bakken and Three Forks oil production areas in North Dakota to an existing crude oil terminal near Pakota, Illinois. The current proposed pipeline route would cross Lake Oahe, an Army Corps of Engineers project on the Missouri River.

I've also reached out to the Environmental Protection Agency, which would have reviewed the pipeline's impact statement, but have not received a response.

Jonathan Harper (0)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 12:31 am

Darren Woolsey (218)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 2:04 am
Shared news article over social media to raise and spread awareness.

Colleen L (3)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 1:16 pm
We don't want it. What part of that don't these fools understand?? Thanks Rosemary

Lynn Squance (235)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 1:31 pm
"...remaining portion of the Dakota Access pipeline was greenlit by the Army Corps of Engineers." --- No, it was green lighted by Drumpfenfarten's corporate whores that control the EPA now.

Drumpfenfarten and his corporate whores care only for $$$, not the people. A pox on them all.

Jeff Creech (64)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 3:37 pm

Janet B (0)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 4:01 pm

Jolene Pope (7)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 6:44 pm
What is even worse is they tried to get a judge to block them from gong forward as this is still being litigated until the court had made a decision on the oppositions request to make them not go under the lake and redirect it away from the water, but the judge refused to halt them until the case is heard. This is a terrible travesty of justice and a terrible job of regulating for the peoples interests by the EPA, the court the Army corp., of Engineers, and President Trump.. It looks like President Trump will have the distinction of being the Environmental disaster President. It is not just the tribe that gets their water from the Mississippi river many states and communities get their water from the Mississippi. Clean water is a precious natural resource in scarce supply around the world and it is needed for survival. Every leader and Government organization and the courts should be on the side of clean water not the side of Big oil.. Every American should stand with Standing Rock. It is that important to the survival of the human race. .Besides it is the right thing to do. How many times is our Government going to trample on the rights of indigenous people whose land they swindled and stole. Broken promises are all the indigenous people of this nation have from our Government. It is time to stop this, & do the right thing. We all must demand this of our Government

Freya H (358)
Tuesday February 14, 2017, 6:54 pm
Looks as though the Army Corps of Engineers has lost all sense of propriety. No environmental impact statement needed? What lunacy is this? We need to stop agonizing and start ORGANIZING! Resist, resist, resist! Support the Water Defenders!

Margie FOURIE (148)
Wednesday February 15, 2017, 1:36 am
Not right

Angela K (379)
Wednesday February 15, 2017, 3:57 am
Noted & shared, ty Rosemary

Patricia N (9)
Wednesday February 15, 2017, 4:18 am environmental protection anymore. All of the wealthy feel they can protect themselves when the world is so polluted that most of the masses are sick and dead.

Arielle S (313)
Wednesday February 15, 2017, 7:06 am
Trump saying he got no phone calls about it - of course not since he shut down the WH comment line. I think we should be calling Trump Tower, Miralago, and any place else he owns to leave comments on this. It's a matter of life and death...

Dawnie W (250)
Sunday February 19, 2017, 12:39 am
❤️Noted...Thanking you kindly...Trump is wanting to be Mr Tuff all the while flexing his non existent muscles. And making the country great again by building the pipes to let it flow under the water supply apparently if the pipes are made in America they will not leak because he can get it done safer. I'm sure that'a what I heard him wafting on about on the radio this morning.❤️

😉💜ღ❤️Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ😺♥L💜ve, Hugs and Peace go with you all♥😺Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ💛ღ❤️😉

RosemaryRannes H (650)
Monday February 27, 2017, 7:43 pm
Mitakuye Oyasin is Lakota, Sioux meaning we are all interconnected.
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