North Dakota Pipeline To Halt Temporarily After Tribe’s Protest
The Standing Rock Sioux tribe’s request for a temporary stop work order on the Dakota Access Pipeline has been granted by a federal judge.
A pipeline company has agreed to halt construction of the oil pipeline in parts of North Dakota until Friday. A Native American tribe says it has ancient burial and prayer sites, a lawyer for the company said in court on Tuesday.
FLASHBACK: Democracy Now! was on the ground on Saturday in North Dakota where security guards working for the Dakota Access pipeline company attacked Native Americans with dogs and pepper spray as they resisted the $3.8 billion pipeline’s construction. If completed, the Dakota Access pipeline would carry about 500,000 barrels of crude per day from North Dakota’s Bakken oil field to Illinois, where it would meet up with an existing pipeline that would carry the oil all the way down to Texas. The pipeline has faced months of resistance from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and members of nearly 100 more tribes from across the U.S. and Canada. On Friday, lawyers for the tribe filed documents showing how the very land where Dakota Access would bulldoze on Saturday was, in fact, a tribal burial site. Democracy Now! was on the ground on Saturday. Below is a Democracy Now! exclusive report:
NEW: Tuesday, September 6, 2016: Judge Grants Partial Stop on North Dakota Pipeline Work
Per abc News: An American Indian tribe succeeded Tuesday in getting a federal judge to temporarily stop construction on some, but not all, of a $3.8 billion four-state oil pipeline, but its broader request still hangs in the balance.
U.S. District Judge James Boasberg said Tuesday that work will temporarily stop between North Dakota’s State Highway 1806 and 20 miles east of Lake Oahe, but will continue west of the highway because he believes the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lacks jurisdiction on private land.
He also said he will rule by the end of Friday on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s challenge of federal regulators’ decision to grant permits to the Dallas, Texas-based operators of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which will cross North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois.
The Huffington Post reports that after violent clashes over the weekend between protesters and security officers near the construction site, the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and a neighboring Native American tribe had asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Sunday for a temporary restraining order against Dakota Access, the company building the pipeline.
U.S. Judge James Boasberg said on Tuesday he granted in part and denied in part the temporary restraining order by agreement of the parties. The area in which Dakota Access agreed to halt activity until Friday represented some but not all of the area requested in the temporary restraining order.
Dakota Access had filed its opposition to the tribes’ request early on Tuesday, accusing the Standing Rock Sioux tribe of provoking the violence and breaking the law in trying to stop the pipeline.
A group of firms led by Energy Transfer Partners <ETP.N> is building the 1,100-mile (1,770-km) pipeline. The $3.7 billion project would be the first to bring crude oil from Bakken shale, a vast oil formation in North Dakota, directly to refineries in the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Dakota Access, the limited liability company carrying out the actual construction, had planned for the pipeline to be operational by the fourth quarter of this year, but construction has been dogged since April by protests in North Dakota.
The judge reaffirmed on Tuesday that he would issue a decision about the injunction by Friday.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers did not oppose the tribes’ motion for the temporary restraining order. The agency said in a court document filed on Sunday that “the public interest would be served by preserving peace” until the judge issues a ruling on the injunction.