Friday, September 9, 2016

Federal Judge Denies Dakota Access Pipeline Restraining Order

A Federal Judge Friday denied a Native American tribe's request for a temporary restraining order to halt construction on the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline.

U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg wrote in his decision that the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe failed to show "it will suffer injury that would be prevented by any injunction the Court could issue."

The ruling on a Native American tribe's request for a temporary restraining order on construction comes one day after Gov. Jack Dalrymple activated the State National Guard "in the event they are needed to support law enforcement response efforts," according to a National Guard spokesman.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed an emergency motion Sunday asking the court "to prevent further destruction of the tribe's sacred sites by Dakota Access Pipeline."
The $3.7 billion project, which would span four states, has led to heated, sometimes violent protests.

Proponents say the project could be an economic boon for the region and potentially change the landscape of the U.Ss crude oil supply.

Those seeking to halt construction warn of an environmental disaster that would destroy sacred Native American sites.

The pipeline's developer, Energy Transfer Partners, has predicted the project would help the United States become less dependent on importing oil from unstable regions of the world.

The tribe wants to halt further construction on an area two miles west of North Dakota Highway 1806, near Lake Oahe, until the judge's ruling.

The plaintiffs claim the tribe was not properly consulted before the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approved the pipeline project, which would run from North Dakota to South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois.

Thousands of people from more than 200 Native American tribes have supported the Standing Rock Sioux's efforts to protect their lands, waters and sacred sites during construction of the pipeline, according to the tribe.

If completed, the 1,172-mile pipeline would carry 470,000 barrels of crude oil a day from North Dakota to Illinois.

Energy Transfer said the pipeline would bring an estimated $156 million in sales and income taxes to State and Local Governments. It would also add 8,000 to 12,000 construction jobs, the developer said.

But about 30 environmental groups, including the Sierra Club and Greenpeace, have slammed the pipeline project, calling it "yet another example of an oil pipeline project being permitted without public engagement or sufficient environmental review."

Protesters are also worried that digging the pipeline under the Missouri River could affect the drinking water supply if the pipeline breaks.

There has been violence on both sides.

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