ND Oil Pipeline Dispute
Doug Barrett | Aug 29, 2017 AT 7:43 am
A federal judge deciding whether to shut down the four-state Dakota Access oil pipeline while more environmental review is done is allowing national energy and manufacturing trade groups to have a say.
U.S. District Judge James Boasberg, in Washington, D.C., granted the request Friday, just days before Monday's final deadline for all parties involved in the legal dispute to weigh in with arguments.
The Standing Rock Sioux and three other American Indian tribes in the Dakotas have been fighting the pipeline for more than a year, arguing that the $3.8 billion project built by Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners threatens cultural sites and tribal water supplies. The company disputes that and maintains the pipeline is safe.
After months of delays, it began moving North Dakota oil through South Dakota and Iowa to a distribution point in Illinois on June 1. However, Boasberg later that month ordered the Army Corps of Engineers, which permitted the project, to further review the pipeline's impact on the Standing Rock tribe. The judge is deciding whether to shut down the pipeline until the completion of the work, which is expected to take several more months.