A recent ruling by Judge James Boasberg on Monday instructed that this controversial pipeline cease operations within 30 days, whilst an environmental impact statement by the Army Corps of Engineers is produced to clarify the rule relaxation that permitted it to cross the Missouri river. This new ruling has established that this easement be invalidated during the process government has to follow to correct it. This ruling also shadows a recent announcement of the cancellation of the separate Atlantic Coast pipeline that was to carry natural gas from West Virginia to North Carolina.
This is a great victory for the tribes that have been challenging this process. The courts had already declared a contravention of environmental laws when Dakota Access was granted permission to build a section of the pipeline.
Boasberg, selected by Obama, stated “Clear precedent favoring vacatur during such a remand coupled with the seriousness of the Corps’ deficiencies outweighs the negative effects of halting the oil flow for the thirteen months that the Corps believes the creation of an [environmental impact statement] will take.”
The Trump administration is in the process of implementing a reversal of part of the National Environment Policy Act, that Boasberg’s assessment is based upon, bearing in mind that this law compels reconsideration of projects such as these pipelines.
This contentious 1 200 mile pipeline that transfers oil from North Dakota to Illinois, has attracted many protests throughout the country in support of the fact that it that passes over native lands of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, who in turn have sued for their rights.