In the face of massive public opposition, Donald Trump just took executive action in an attempt to move forward construction of the Dakota Access pipeline.
While this may seem like a major setback, Trump’s executive order is not the last word. For the next few weeks, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is accepting public comments to decide what to include in its environmental study on the pipeline. The pipeline’s fate is currently in the Army Corps of Engineers’ hands – and this comment period is our best chance to stop it.
We must tell the Army Corps that the Dakota Access pipeline poses too much of a threat to drinking water supplies, sacred sites, indigenous rights, the environment and our climate to allow construction to resume.
Deadline Feb. 20: Tell the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to stop construction of the Dakota Access pipeline.
The Dakota Access pipeline would carry 450,000 barrels of dirty oil per day from North Dakota to Illinois and cut through fragile wildlife habitat, environmentally sensitive areas, and sovereign tribal property.1 In particular, the Environmental Impact Statement currently being prepared is considering the last part of the pipeline that would cross under the Missouri River, threatening drinking water downstream if a catastrophic oil spill occurs.
Buckling under massive pressure by Native American water protectors in North Dakota and millions of activists across the country, the Army Corps announced in December that it would not grant an easement to let the pipeline cross under Lake Oahe near the Standing Rock Sioux tribe reservation and instead would prepare an EIS for alternative routes.2
This is the next step in protecting the Standing Rock Sioux’s tribal rights and water supplies as well as protecting the environment and slowing runaway climate change. While Trump’s executive action puts pressure on the Army Corps to speed up or withdraw its environmental study altogether, it’s critical that the Army Corps hear from as many people as possible to prevent the completion of the pipeline.
Hundreds of thousands of CREDO activists and thousands of Native and environmental allies on the ground forced a halt in construction of the Dakota Access pipeline last year – and we can do it again.
Deadline Feb 20: Tell the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to stop construction of the Dakota Access pipeline.
Thanks for all you do.
- Jack Healy, “Occupying the Prairie: Tensions Rise as Tribes Move to Block a Pipeline,” The New York Times, August 23, 2016.
- Brad Plummer, “What Trump’s executive orders on Dakota Access and Keystone XL actually do,” Vox, Jan. 24, 2017.