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posted by martyb on Monday June 19 2017, @11:47AM   Printer-friendly
from the considering-the-other-side dept.

AlterNet reports

A federal judge ruled [June 14] that the Trump administration must conduct additional environmental review of the Dakota Access Pipeline, handing a limited victory to Native American tribes fighting the administration's decision to move forward with the project.

In an extensive opinion,[PDF][1] Washington, DC District Court Judge James Boasberg sided with the tribes by agreeing the Army Corps of Engineers "did not consider the impacts of an oil spill on fishing rights, human rights, or environmental justice."

[...] Boasberg did not order a shutdown of operations on the pipeline, which began pumping oil early this month. The tribes and pipeline owner Energy Transfer Partners are ordered to appear in court next week to decide next legal steps, and the tribes are expected to argue for a full shutdown of pipeline operations.

[1] Link in article redirects.

Previous coverage:
Dakota Access Pipeline Suffers Oil Leak Even Before Becoming Operational
Recent News Dispatches From Standing Rock (DAPL)
Army Corp of Engineers Now Accepting Public Comment on the Dakota Access Pipeline
Army Corps of Engineers Blocks the Dakota Access Pipeline
Standing Rock Protester May Lose Her Arm Because of Police Grenades
Water Cannons Used in Sub-Freezing Temperatures at Dakota Access Oil Pipeline Protest
Standing Rock Protestors Gassed and Attacked; Bundy Gang Acquitted [Updated]
Journalist Charged in North Dakota with Rioting; Case is Dismissed

Original Submission

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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by tonyPick on Monday June 19 2017, @02:11PM

    by tonyPick (1237) on Monday June 19 2017, @02:11PM (#527909) Homepage Journal

    The judge goes through quite some contortions, in order to find fault with this.

    Really? Having had a quick spin through that section I'm not seeing contortions - the 0.5 mile buffer isn't a standard used in any other oil pipelines (it's apparently the value you'd use for bridge construction and traffic widening), and the SR folks point to other oil pipeline projects that use much much higher buffer ranges (14 and 40 miles downstream for water contamination) as standard.

    Following that it doesn't seem a stretch to say that the value chosen is unusually low, to try to avoid having to consider the tribal lands, and that they needed to be considered.

    How are you supposed to objectively analyze the cultural effects of an oil spill?

    well, from the actual report:

    Standing Rock provides one such example in its briefing: many of its members fish, hunt, and gather for subsistence. See SRST MSJ at 41. Losing the ability to do so
    could seriously and disproportionately harm those individuals relative to those in nearby non- tribal communities.
    The Corps need not necessarily have addressed that particular issue, but it needed to offer more than a bare-bones conclusion that Standing Rock would not be disproportionately harmed by a spill.

    This doesn't sound particularly contorted to me...

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