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posted by martyb on Monday December 05 2016, @01:13PM   Printer-friendly
from the embrace-extend-extinguish? dept.

According to an article at Snopes.com:

The Army Corps of Engineers has denied the easement needed to complete the Dakota Access Pipeline, according Colonel Henderson, who notified Veterans for Standing Rock co-organizer Michael A. Wood Jr on 4 December 2016.

More than 3,000 veterans had converged at the Standing Rock camp to support the Sioux in their ongoing opposition to the building of a $3.7 billion pipeline that would cross through disputed land managed by the Army Corps of Engineers. Wood said upon learning of the move, "This is history."

From a report in Al Jazeera :

The US Army Corps of Engineers has turned down a permit for a controversial pipeline project running through North Dakota, in a victory for Native Americans and climate activists who have protested against the project for several months, according to a statement released.

The 1,885km Dakota Access Pipeline, owned by Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners LP, had been complete except for a segment planned to run under Lake Oahe, a reservoir formed by a dam on the Missouri River.

"The Army will not grant an easement to cross Lake Oahe at the proposed location based on the current record," a statement from the US Army said.

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe, along with climate activists, have been protesting the $3.8bn project, saying it could contaminate the water supply and damage sacred tribal lands.

[...] "Today, the US Army Corps of Engineers announced that it will not be granting the easement to cross Lake Oahe for the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline," said Standing Rock Chairman Dave Archambault II, in a statement.

"Instead, the Corps will be undertaking an environmental impact statement to look at possible alternative routes."


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  • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 05 2016, @06:00PM

    by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 05 2016, @06:00PM (#437280)

    The Bismarck route simply affects far more people. What is so hard to understand about that?

    I don't really see what the problem is. If its safe enough for indians its safe enough for white people, right? The CivEng team originally thought the safest way to cross the river was upstream of Bismark, so that's what they should do. Or if its not safe for humans of any race they should cross the river downstream of the rez.

    Its almost like someone stopped designing for minimal cost and started designing for maximal race riot for no reason obvious to me. Its just bad engineering.

    The other triggering part of the design is for all the money spent on BS, they could have crossed the river in 24 inches of battleship armor plating or dug an automotive and pipeline tunnel under the river or maybe a bridge over it all of which would result in less oil entering the water over the lifetime of the system. Imagine a ditch like bridge top with bulldozered out concrete lined depressions on each shore capable of theoretically holding a million gallons of leakage. I wonder with infinite money and motivation with horizontal directional drilling they could have gone a mile from each shore and 5000 feet below the river. But no we're gonna get protests and poison "someone's" water instead, we're just fighting over who ends up downstream of the leaks...

    Worst possible way to environmentally engineer low pollution is to spend all the money and time arguing over who gets the privilege of being downstream.

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  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Monday December 05 2016, @06:16PM

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 05 2016, @06:16PM (#437286) Journal

    I don't really see what the problem is.

    More than an order of magnitude more people.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Monday December 05 2016, @06:41PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 05 2016, @06:41PM (#437303)

      Its useful to point out that the Missouri does not end just south of the reservation. Its hard to get a straight answer but wikipedia implies 12 or so million people in the watershed nearby the river. Of course some are upstream of Bismarck, and in the watershed doesn't necessarily imply they rely on the river for drinking water, etc.

      Certainly every drop of crude oil dripped into the river will flow past two orders of magnitude more people just in the greater St Louis metro area, eventually, and all that water or crude or whatever flows past New Orleans eventually, etc.

      Its a very local issue to put either everyone, just the local minorities, or nobody local at all, at risk in that local area. The numbers are small and don't matter because millions of people will live downstream and be affected by leaks one way or another so arguing on the basis of thousands doesn't matter much.

      • (Score: 1) by khallow on Monday December 05 2016, @07:32PM

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Monday December 05 2016, @07:32PM (#437330) Journal

        Certainly every drop of crude oil dripped into the river will flow past two orders of magnitude more people just in the greater St Louis metro area, eventually, and all that water or crude or whatever flows past New Orleans eventually, etc.

        Most of those people won't be getting their water from the river in the first place.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 05 2016, @07:48PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 05 2016, @07:48PM (#437346)

    What's puzzling to me is that the current proposed crossing is where the river is ~1/2 mile wide (800 meters?). Not too far north of this, and still south of Bismarck, the river is a few hundred feet wide.

    So why did Dakota Access Pipeline choose this option that called for much more expensive boring under the wide spot in the river?

    Are there actual geological or other reasons, or did it just look like it might be easier to get the Indians to give them a Right of Way, instead of other land owners?

    • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday December 07 2016, @10:51PM

      by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday December 07 2016, @10:51PM (#438542) Journal
      Narrower rivers generally are faster flowing ones with more capability to erode. A longer stretch of tunnel might be a good trade off for not having the river cut into your pipeline.