Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Obama Administration Temporarily Blocks the Dakota Access Pipeline

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the hundreds of Native protestors who have joined them in rural North Dakota won a huge but provisional victory in their quest to stop the Dakota Access pipeline, as the U.S. government announced late on Friday afternoon that it was voluntarily halting work on the project. The triumph tasted all the sweeter because it had followed so closely after a seemingly immense defeat. Mere minutes after a federal judge declined the Tribe’s request for an injunction to stop construction on the pipeline, the Obama administration made a surprise announcement that it would not permit the project to continue for now. “Construction of the pipeline on Army Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe will not go forward at this time,” said a joint statement from the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior, and the U.S. Army. “We request that the pipeline company voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west of Lake Oahe.” The Army will now move to “reconsider any of its previous decisions” regarding whether the pipeline respects federal law, especially the National Environmental Policy Act, the statement said...more

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