Army Corps to Grant Easement for Dakota Access Pipeline

The Army Corps of Engineers said it plans to grant an easement for the Dakota Access pipeline to be constructed on federal property in a court filing on Tuesday, allowing the controversial pipeline to finally be finished.

The Army Corps will approve a request from Energy Transfer Partners to allow construction of the crude oil pipeline under federally managed land at Lake Oahe, according to a filing with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals. The mostly-constructed pipeline would run from North Dakota to southern Illinois.

The Obama administration initially approved the request, but halted construction after the pipeline attracted national attention thanks to opposition from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and environmentalists. The tribe filed a lawsuit saying the government violated several statutes when it approved the pipeline, and complained it was upstream of their reservation on the Missouri River, meaning an oil spill would threaten the tribe’s water supply.

The Obama administration then called for a halt on construction and a more thorough environmental review.

President Donald Trump signed a presidential memorandum in January calling for the federal government to expedite its review of the Dakota Access pipeline, in addition to the Keystone XL pipeline.

Morning Consult