It’s been quite awhile since the #StandingRockSioux Tribe or the #DakotaAccessPipeline was covered by #mainstreammedia outlets, despite emerging news of lawsuits being filed and the continuous fight to shut down the pipeline. The most recent news was when #PresidentDonaldTrump spoke in #Cincinnati several weeks ago to announce that the pipeline was up and running, offering crude jokes about his simple decision to approve the pipeline in an executive order just five days after becoming president. “The Dakota Access pipeline is now officially open for business—a $3.8-billion investment in #American infrastructure that was stalled,” he said. “Nobody thought any politician would have the guts to approve that final leg. And I just closed my eyes and said: Do it,” Trump said in his speech on June 7.
Although the pipeline is now in use, a federal judge recently ruled in favor of the #NativeAmerican tribe after more than a year of battling the U.S. government and multi-billion dollar corporations over their right to run a pipeline through sacred land. The ruling stated that the initial study into the environmental consequences of the pipeline, which was conducted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, was inadequate.
The judge pointed to the Corps’ conclusion of “the impacts of an oil spill on fishing rights, hunting rights, or #environmentaljustice” as being particularly inadequate, saying in his 91-page decision that another study needed to be conducted.
While the tribe is thrilled with this victory, which is the first legal battle they’ve won since first pressing the government and corporations with lawsuits, there are mixed reactions to another portion of the judge’s decision. Although the judge called for a new study to be conducted, he did not demand that the pipeline be shut down in the interim. Typically when a federal permit is found to be lacking, in this case it’s the environmental impact report, the judge will order a cease of operations. Instead, the pipeline will continue to be used while the tribe and court awaits the new study. Despite this setback, the tribe remains optimistic about the decision. 🖐🏾More in comments👇🏾#NoDAPL