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Dakota Access Follows Existing Pipeline Right of Way from 1980s

We’ve reported it before, but it bears repeating, and it looks like SayAnythingBlog is doing their due diligence as well when it comes to the issue of the Dakota Access Pipeline in Morton County.

In the 1,206 page Mitigated Finding of No Significant Impact report related to the Dakota Access Pipeline filed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers there is a graphic (page. 1008) that clearly shows the Northern Border Pipeline, built in 1982, crossing the Missouri at the location where the Dakota Access Pipeline is being routed.

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Here’s what’s notable about SayAnythingBlog’s findings:

“What’s interesting is that the Northern Border line doesn’t seem to have prompted any protests or complaints from the Standing Rock tribe according to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s Environmental Impact Statement for the pipeline:

You’ll note that the Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation expressed some concerns about possible issues with the Northern Border route, but not Standing Rock.

Today the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has claimed that the Dakota Access Pipeline will destroy significant cultural artifacts along its route, but made no such claims about the Northern Border line.”

Despite the fact the pipeline crosses the exact same private land that the Dakota Access Pipeline crossed, there were only concerns expressed about cultural sites at Compressor Stations 5 and 7 on the Northern Border Pipeline by the Three Affiliated Tribes. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe did not make any claims that Northern Border would destroy significant cultural artifacts along the route.

Because the Dakota Access Pipeline runs the same length of route for approximately 40 miles, how could cultural artifacts be present when the land has now been surveyed for two separate projects, once for Northern Border and again for Dakota Access?


MAIN Coalition Issues Statement on Judge Boasberg’s Decision

MAIN Coalition spokesperson Craig Stevens issued the following statement after Judge Boasberg issued a ruling on the Temporary Restraining Order:

“The MAIN coalition is pleased with Judge Boasberg’s decision that will allow the ongoing construction of the federally permitted Dakota Access pipeline west of Lake Oahe and we remain hopeful that his pending ruling on the injunction will ultimately allow progress to continue.  We agree with the Army Corps of Engineers that safety must be the top priority; and the pipeline, once completed, will be among the safest, most technologically advanced pipelines ever constructed and bring much needed energy to communities across the country.”


Correcting the Record: USACE Weighs in on Violence

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers stated today that they will not oppose the temporary restraining order, acknowledging in court papers filed Monday that the area has been the site of recent confrontations and the “public interest would be served by preserving peace” until the court rules on the injunction.

Keeping the peace is important, and the MAIN Coalition wholeheartedly supports a peaceful solution to the protests north of the Standing Rock Reservation.

However, it should be noted that this statement was preceded by acts of unthinkable violence by the protesters who attacked and beat several members of the labor community working on the pipeline as well as security officials protecting construction workers and equipment.

If there is a restraining order that should be issued, it should be against those that have incited violence and assaulted the workers, the protesters themselves.


Dakota Access’ Only Similarity To Keystone: It is a Pipeline

In a recent publication by E + E News, Chairman of the MAIN Coalition Ed Wiederstein was quoted stating the Dakota Access Pipeline, “is not like Keystone, other than it’s a pipeline, that’s the only comparison you can make.”

He’s correct.

Unlike Keystone XL, the Dakota Access Pipeline will be constructed entirely within the United States for the purpose of transporting American produced oil from the Bakken and Three Forks Shale Region of North Dakota, not the Tar Sands of Alberta, Canada. Because the pipeline does not cross an international border, it is legally not subject to the same review process as a pipeline like Keystone XL. Instead, the Dakota Access Pipeline underwent thorough reviews by each individual state utility regulator, the North Dakota Public Services Commission, South Dakota Public Utilities Commission, Iowa Utilities Board, and Illinois Commerce Commission, as well as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as part of the Nationwide 12 permit application. The construction of these types of pipelines takes place frequently, and throughout the United States, hundreds operate safely beneath our land and waterways every day.

Throughout the review process for Dakota Access, states and the federal government consulted with experts in fields of agriculture, archaeology, geology, and historic preservation. The public including stakeholder groups, landowners, and Native American tribes were invited to comment, consult, correspond, and intervene throughout the process as part of the evidence used to make each individual permitting decision, and many did weigh in.

Additional review on the part of the federal government would be an unnecessary overreach into the purview of state regulators, and should have no impact on the final decision already made to construct this project by four states and the Corps of Engineers. With project construction already well under way, any commentary or suggested input on the Dakota Access Pipeline by the White House or the presidential campaigns can only be viewed as politically motivated.


Judge to Hear Request on Tribe Restraining Order – Doesn’t Add Up

Tomorrow in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., a judge will hear a plea from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe for a restraining order against the Dakota Access project.

Yet video from violent protests this past weekend shows the tribal protesters aggressively pursuing and assaulting the company who were doing work on private land where they have easements. Shouldn’t the restraining order instead be issued to Dakota Access?

The project – announced more than 800 days ago – was approved by four state bodies and the federal Government and is more than 22 percent constructed. The government consulted with the tribe and conducted numerous cultural surveys to design a route that did not disturb cultural remains.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has had countless opportunities to take part in the process and instead chose not to answer the company’s many attempts to work together. Even now the tribe is failing to articulate any alternatives. Some within the tribe believe the tribal leaders are acting out for publicity and should use their platform to do good for the tribal members and local community. Most agree that the pipeline would deliver tremendous benefits including increasing safety by taking trains and trucks carrying crude oil off the rails and roads.

Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman David Archambault should restrain his own members and not waste time in court on a needless restraining order against the company. The lawless acts of the tribe against the company are despicable and must end. We ask Chairman Archambault to take a stand, show leadership, and hold the ranks of his members accountable for the violence.

There is always a better way.

 


Hypocrisy at Standing Rock

It seems that hypocrisy and untruths know no bounds these days.

Peaceful protests? Hardly. What happened over the weekend shows the brutal actions by the opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline are becoming more commonplace. More than 250 protesters charged 14 Dakota Access security personnel Saturday with rocks, pipe, and other weapons, sending workers to the hospital. Is this the “peaceful protest” that Chairman Archambault is condoning?  We want to know.

But what about the resources needed to protest the pipeline? As we’ve seen, you need a lot of oil to protest oil pipelines.

In fact, we learned today that many of the protesters may have been purchasing gasoline and diesel fuel from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s very own chairman, David Archambault II.

That’s right— Chairman Archambault is a proud owner of his very own gas station —the Cannon Ball Pit Stop. He’s managed to assemble thousands of protesters at a “spirit camp” conveniently located just a few miles away from his small business, which is likely turning a nice profit these days.

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Chairman Archambault’s personal website and resume prominently note that he’s been the “Owner/Manager” of the gas station from 2011 to present.  He touted this fact when he ran for Chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.

David Archambault

 

Is it not rather ironic that a man opposed to a crude oil pipeline due to its potential impact on the environment has no issue profiting from one of the most important by-products of American-produced crude oil?  We think so.  “Do as I say not as I do” would be a good new mantra for the small but vocal group at Standing Rock opposed to Dakota Access.


Standing Rock Won’t Draw Water from North Dakota by End of Year

This map shows approximately where the Dakota Access Pipeline will cross the Missouri River, in red, along with the locations of Fort Yates, North Dakota, and Mobridge, South Dakota, marked in green. (Courtesy of the SayAnythingBlog)

Despite numerous allegations from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe about the threat to water for the reservation from the Dakota Access Pipeline, what has gone unreported is the slated closure of a water intake from Lake Oahe at Fort Yates, ND.

In a conversation reported on SayAnythingBlog Dave Rosencranz, the Dakotas Area manager for the Federal Bureau of Reclamation, pointed out that the Standing Rock community is served by water intakes on Lake Oahe but the Fort Yates intake, which is nearest the Dakota Access Pipeline crossing, is slated for closure. “There’s been a lot of issues with that intake,” referring to the Fort Yates facility. “It’s just time to replace it. It’s basically at the end of its life.”

Once again we see that the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and their allies are willing to talk out of both sides of their mouth to get their way. First they claimed this protest was regarding the safety of their water resources, and now the facts show that they won’t even be pulling water from North Dakota by the end of the year. At first they claimed they would hold a peaceful protest to protect their water, and now violence has broken out as the Standing Rock Sioux attacked members of the labor community.

How much longer can we listen to people who will clearly say whatever it takes to keep the spotlight on them and their agenda? The reality is clearly much different, lies are becoming exposed, and the fabric of the protest is beginning to unravel. Violent acts are now guiding these protesters and it’s time to put a stop to it.


Aggressive Protesters Disobey the Law, Breach Construction Site and Attack Pipeline Workers

Enough is enough. It is time for the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota to come to an end.

Yesterday afternoon, video surfaced of hundreds of protesters arriving at a Dakota Access Pipeline construction site on Saturday. Within minutes of arriving at the site, the protesters ambushed and attacked security officials and members of the labor community. Is this what Standing Rock Sioux Chairman David Archambault meant when he said the tribe would engage in a peaceful protest in the New York Times?

Morton County Sheriff Kyle Kirchmeier called the protests anything but peaceful stating, “Any suggestion that today’s event was a peaceful protest, is false. This was more like a riot than a protest. Individuals crossed onto private property and accosted private security officers with wooden posts and flag pole. The aggression and violence displayed here today is unlawful and should not be repeated. While no arrests were made at the scene, we are actively investigating the incident and individuals who organized and participated in this unlawful event.

How can we allow these unlawful actions to continue – they are disrupting our communities and putting the safety of themselves and others at risk. The attack against the labor community represents an escalation of the ongoing illegal actions that continue to take place north of Cannon Ball, North Dakota.

Despite the fact that this pipeline, at no point, crosses the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s reservation, protesters trespassed onto private property and assaulted workers and security personnel, breaking through a fence line, and injuring several workers.

The recent violence only further shows how the so-called “peaceful protests” at the job site have been anything but peaceful. Reports in the past few weeks have shown the extent of what the protesters will do, including:

– threats of violence toward police officers
– continued trespassing on private property
– dangerous occupation of construction equipment
– continued intimidation tactics including spitting, throwing punches, rocks, and flashing knives, toward police and members of the labor community

These incidents have proven that the protesters are more than happy to incite violence, and engage in illegal actions despite the threat of arrest. Up to three dozen have been arrested before today, but protesters remain undeterred.

The bottom line is the protesters actions have devolved and descended into a state of lawlessness where people are being physically hurt. Enough is enough.

The protests have escalated to a point they can no longer be called a free speech activity. By violently assaulting construction employees on private land, it is obvious the opponents of the project have now chosen the sword over the pen.

It’s time to put an end to these actions and restore order so that this pipeline can continue construction in a safe manner, as the state of North Dakota, and the federal government has determined it has a right to do.

It is time for Governor Dalrymple and his administration, along with local law enforcement, denounce these activities and protect law abiding citizens from the violent acts of this small and threatening group.


Even Protesters Need Fossil Fuels Transported By Pipeline

How much of the recent Dakota Access Pipeline protest taking place in North Dakota has been fueled by oil or petroleum byproducts?

Quite a bit actually.

In a recent Bloomberg post, Ethan Bellamy, an analyst at Robert W. Baird & Co. in Denver said, “Unless those protesters drove electric cars to the construction site, or those celebrities rode horses from Hollywood to North Dakota, I’d ask them how else they’d like to move goods, services and people around the world.”

Not only when it comes to transportation does this protest require the use of fossil fuels, but many of the products being used at the protest site, from plastic bags, to tarps and tents, to medicine, and even to the PVC pipe used to chain a protester to an excavator. All of those products are made using fossil fuel byproducts created through the refining process.

Protest+DAPL

A North Dakota protester using PVC pipe to hold himself to an excavator. Photo Credit: KFYR.

The reality is that everyone relies on the products made from oil, and in order to get to the refining process oil must be transported from the source of production to a refinery. Pipelines like Dakota Access make that possible. So whether it’s powering farming machinery, or bagging groceries at the supermarket, or installing new plumbing in your house, petroleum products are what make modern life possible.


The Myths and Facts Behind the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Claims

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has made many accusations toward Dakota Access and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that just aren’t true. We’ve debunked many other claims as false, and discovered that hundreds of consultations were held on the pipeline project with Native American tribes and nations. Here are a few more of the myths being spread, and the real facts behind them. 

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The more you look, the more you realize that the claims of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and their radical environmental allies at EarthJustice don’t add up.

Everyone is entitled to their opinions, and public discourse is important on a project of this scale. But after nearly two years of thorough review and final approval by multiple state and federal regulatory agencies, the time has come to construct the pipeline.