In the proper spirit of Thanksgiving I think it’s appropriate to ask “What have we done for our Native American/First People’s lately?” And don’t think the answer to that question is that wonderful.
While police from dozens of jurisdictions are keeping protestors and protectors well back from the site of the Dakota Access Pipeline, the energy company behind the project has been moving forward on construction of their drill pad which is now less than ½ mile from the banks of the Missouri River, even after still-President Obama and the Army Corp of engineers had requested for a halt in development.
The confirmation came in the aftermath of a video published by drone pilot Shiyé Bidziil on the news website Indian Country Today titled, “Drone Footage of Dakota Access Pipeline Approaching Missouri River.” Published November 2, this video offers an airborne view of pipeline construction — coupled with heavily guarded concrete fortresses around key construction locales — in close proximity to the Missouri River.
“The Army will not authorize constructing the Dakota Access pipeline on Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe until it can determine whether it will need to reconsider any of its previous decisions regarding the Lake Oahe site under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) or other federal laws,” reads the initial September 9 statement disseminated by the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Interior, and Army Corps.
“Therefore, construction of the pipeline on Army Corps land bordering or under Lake Oahe will not go forward at this time. In the interim, we request that the pipeline company voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west of Lake Oahe.”
Yeah, they really haven’t done that. And instead of law enforcement being focused on the drilling company Energy Transfer Properties following the DC district court order — they’ve been using water cannons at night in freezing temperatures to disrupt the protests.
First the video.
The fact of the matter is this.
“After the DC courts ruled in favor of the federal government, federal agencies asked the Dakota Access pipeline company to voluntarily pause all construction activity within 20 miles east or west of Lake Oahe,” Graham told DeSmog. “The key word is 'voluntary,' and the company chose to proceed with construction. As to why they did this, you will have to contact Energy Transfer Partners to ask that question.”
Yeah, that would be a good question to ask.
Clearly Energy Transfer Properties has not honored the request to halt construction within 20 miles of Federal lands. Meanwhile Police argue that protestors had illegally blocked a road and started fires, while protestors argue that the fires were started by police tear gas canisters and that the water cannons they used to put them out present significant risks of hypothermia and frostbite for those present in area with an air temperature of just 25 degrees Fahrenheit.
After months of protest against the proposed North Dakota Access Pipeline, the clash between police and activists heated up Sunday night as temperatures cooled to dangerous levels.
Protesters, many of whom are from the Standing Rock Indian Reservation, have been demonstrating against the oil pipeline that would pass through North Dakota's Lake Oahe, a sacred burial site and major source of drinking water for the Standing Rock Sioux.
Rather than putting legal protestors at risk, perhaps law enforcement should turn around and start asking some pointing questions of Energy Transfer because it’s pretty clear that they are the ones who thumbing their nose at the courts and the law, far more than the protestors.
The Obama Administration is attempting move forward on this.
The Obama administration currently is conducting formal, government-to-government consultations with Native American tribes across the U.S. in order to obtain tribal input on how federal decisions are made about major infrastructure projects. The final consultation is set for November 21 via teleconference, with four more sessions slated between now and then, including the November 17 consultation in Rapid City, a few hours drive from Standing Rock.
How much further this is likely to move forward with President-Elect Pepe after the inauguration is completely up in the air, particular since Trump himself has a $1 Million investment in Energy Transfer Partners, and they gave over $100,000 to his campaign.
Donald Trump's surprise election win has encouraged Energy Transfer Partners's Kelcy Warren, the CEO of the parent company of Dakota Access LLC, which is building the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL). In an interview with CBS This Morning, Warren said he is "100 percent" confident that the president-elect will help the company finish the project.
Trump has not spoken about the DAPL but holds stocks that are directly funding the Dakota Access Pipeline. According to Trump's financial disclosure forms, The Guardian reported that he has invested between $500,000 and $1 million in Energy Transfer Partners.
During the above interview the ETP CEO was asked “It’s not gonna benefit Americans if the pipeline leaks right?” To which he answered “I’m not gonna win that argument with you because pipelines do leak!” Even the CEO of the company basically admits that the environmental concerns of the protestors — are legitimate. That’s on top of the issue of it being Sacred Ground that they’re building on and President Drumpf personally profiting on the project.
Yeah, ok, isn’t that awesome?