Army cuts environmental review short to green-light DAPL easement

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FILE PHOTO
  • FILE PHOTO
Remember when we reported that you have until Feb. 20 to submit a comment to the Army Corps of Engineer on the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL)?

Well, we didn't mislead you, but they did!

On Tuesday, two weeks shy of the stated deadline, the Army cut off its environmental review and prematurely granted an easement for that last remaining section of the hard-fought pipeline. That means that Dakota Access, LLC, a subsidiary of the Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners, can go ahead and drill under the Missouri River which supplies water to the nearby Standing Rock Sioux tribe and millions of other Americans.

In announcing the decision, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army Paul Cramer cited President Donald Trump's executive order urging expedited approval for why his agency will "waive its policy to wait 14 days after Congressional notification before granting an easement." Trump has been an investor in Energy Transfer Partners, whose CEO donated to his presidential campaign. The company told other media they intend for oil to be flowing by summertime.

The indigenous-led resistance has called this moment their "last stand." Tribal lawyers are rushing to file legal challenges as construction gets underway. Human rights observers are flocking to the site to keep an eye on potential violations.

In a statement, the Sacred Stone camp says that given what's happened there already, "Police violence seems inevitable and mass casualties are very likely." They've also called for an "international day of emergency actions to disrupt business as usual and unleash a global intersectional resistance to fossil fuels and fascism.  Connect with other struggles.  Think long-term movement building. We are in this for the long haul."

That means, the statement continues, "[connecting] our prayers for the water with other fights against fascism and the domination of people and Mother Earth (deportations, muslim ban, attacks on labor, deregulation of wall street, other fossil fuel projects, censorship of the press and academia, etc). by targeting city halls, federal buildings, army corps offices, ICE detention centers, banks profiting off DAPL, Sheriff's Offices that have come to Standing Rock, labor union offices, sites of workplace struggle, etc."

Local water protectors will honor that call on Friday at the Wells Fargo at 90 S. Cascade. "Let's support the call for resistance and demand that Wells Fargo divest from DAPL immediately!" write the Green Party organizers. "Bring your signs, drums and warrior spirits."

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