Published: Thu, March 30, 2017
Markets | By Erika Turner

Tribes: Oil flow isn't end of pipeline battle

The Dakota Access Pipeline is to begin service in the near future as its developer, Energy Transfer Partners, announced that oil has been placed under the Missouri River reservoir.

"Dakota Access is now commissioning the full pipeline and is preparing to place the pipeline into service", a court filing was quoted by The Hill as reading. The Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux tribes continue to pursue their lawsuit which demands a stop to the project.

Iron Eyes and 73 others were arrested February 1 after setting up teepees on land that authorities say is owned by pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners.

For the thousands who protested the pipeline, the idea that the pipeline, which has the potential to leak into major water sources and will plow directly through Standing Rock Sioux territory near sacred burial grounds, is a devastating defeat.

January 18, 2017 — The Army Corps launches a full environmental study of the pipeline's disputed Lake Oahe crossing that could take up to two years to complete.

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January 24 — President Donald Trump signs executive actions to advance the construction of the Dakota Access and Keystone XL oil pipelines.

Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners made the announcement in a court filing Monday. The company on March 20 reported "recent coordinated physical attacks" on the pipeline without offering details. Authorities in South Dakota and Iowa confirm people apparently used a torch to burn holes through empty sections of the pipeline at aboveground shut-off valve sites. The crux of that dispute is whether the pipeline benefits the public in that state and whether the government was right to allow ETP to use eminent domain to obtain land for the project. The pipeline is projected to cost $3.8 billion and carry half a million barrels of oil daily.

Filling sections of the pipeline with crude oil is part of the final preparations to bring it into service.

With daily production of about 1 million barrels a day, North Dakota together with Texas and it's 3.5 million barrels per day make up about half of US crude oil output, according to energy department figures.

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