Skip to main content

The protested North Dakota pipeline will be blocked for (at least) a bit longer

The possibility of letting the pipeline company drill underneath Lake Oahe has been under review.

Since Sept. 9, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been reviewing whether to allow the Dakota Access Pipeline to be constructed under Lake Oahe.

More than two months later, the Corps has announced the result of its review.

And that result is ... there needs to be more discussion and analysis before the Corps makes a decision.

That's "in light of the history of the Great Sioux Nation’s dispossessions of lands, the importance of Lake Oahe to the Tribe, our government-to-government relationship, and the statute governing easements through government property."

The pipeline – which is being constructed by Energy Transfer Partners – would carry crude oil from North Dakota to Illinois on a nearly 1,200-mile route. The stretch of the pipeline that's supposed to go under Lake Oahe (which is owned by the federal government, and located near Cannon Ball, North Dakota) is essentially the last piece. Once it's done, it will connect the two sides and make a complete route.

But hundreds of people have joined the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in protesting the pipeline's route in recent months. The Tribe has argued the pipeline threatens its water supply if there's a leak, and that it would impede on sacred land.

So that's led to the protests, the arrests, and the review from the Army Corps of Engineers – which has to grant Energy Transfer Partners what's called an "easement" before the company can build beneath the lake.

Energy Transfer Partners last week started moving drilling equipment into place around Lake Oahe, expecting to get the easements in the coming weeks. Whether that will actually be the case isn't clear. (Though its CEO expects it to get the all clear under President Donald Trump.)

The Army Corps of Engineers Monday said it wants the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe to be part of the upcoming discussion, including questions of:

  • How to reduce the risk of a spill or leak.
  • How to make sure a leak or spill is detected quickly, if it does happen.
  • How else to protect Lake Oahe.
  • And any other input the Tribe sees as relevant.

"While these discussions are ongoing, construction on or under Corps land bordering Lake Oahe cannot occur... " the Corps said in part.

The Corps also added it supports people expressing their right to protest ... but also asks people follow the law when doing so.

Meanwhile, the Morton County Sheriff's Department – which has been at the center of law enforcement efforts to control demonstrations – posted this to Facebook Monday:

Next Up

Eric Kendricks

Vikings downgrade Eric Kendricks to out against Lions

The Vikings have also activated Michael Pierce from injured reserve.

u.s. attorney

Minnesotan sentenced after assaulting man with baseball bat

Marshall Wayne Boshey was sentenced to 30 months in prison followed by two years of supervised release.

Target store

Target's gift card discount is back, but for this weekend only

The fine print: for Target Circle members only (but membership is free).

Screen Shot 2020-06-15 at 7.11.05 AM

Minneapolis teen arrested in St. Cloud after fleeing police in stolen vehicle

The vehicle was stolen in a car-jacking in Minneapolis Thursday.

snow, blowing snow

Winter storm warnings issued with heavy snow set to slam MN

Parts of northern Minnesota could see more than a foot of snow, but there won't be much in the Twin Cities.

D'Angelo Russell

With KAT out, Timberwolves can't upset Nets

D'Angelo Russell stepped up but couldn't overcome Brooklyn's firepower.

Everson Griffen Vikings dot com

Everson Griffen confirms he has bipolar disorder

"I’ve been running from it a long time. I’m not ashamed of it anymore.”

Angela Renee Jones, St. Cloud murder suspect

St. Cloud suspect now charged in two local murder cases

Both murders happened within a day of each other in June.

st anthony 3 crop

Twin Cities police ask for help finding missing 16-year-old

Police say all her family and friends have been contacted, and none of them know where she is.

mpd suspect 12.3.21 - 1 - CROP

MPD releases photos of shooting suspect, asks for public's help

The man is wanted in connection with a fatal shooting that happened Wednesday evening.


More protesters arrested at Standing Rock, as drilling equipment moves into place

The pipeline company said this week it's moving drilling equipment to Lake Oahe.

Reports: Dakota Access Pipeline will get permission to build from the Army Corps

The Army Corps of Engineers filed court documents signaling it will allow the pipeline to be built.

Franken wants 'excessive and unnecessary' spraying of pipeline protesters investigated

"We're just not going to let people, protesters in large groups, come in and threaten officers," the sheriff said.

The Dakota Access Pipeline leaked a little bit

The leak was relatively small, but the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe leader says it proves their argument.

Construction of the protested North Dakota pipeline will sort of get to go on

Construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline will resume after a temporary halt was thrown out by a court of appeals.

Standing Rock calls pipeline ruling a victory – but will DAPL be shut off?

A judge says a thorough oil spill analysis for the Dakota Access Pipeline wasn't done. So what happens next?

A judge won't temporarily block work on the Dakota Access Pipeline

A tribe asked a judge to block the pipeline while lawsuits worked their way through the courts.

A crude oil pipeline in ND spilled thousands of gallons into a waterway

The spill happened about 150 miles from the site of DAPL protests.