The controversial Dakota Access Pipeline will remain operational during the environmental review by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
According to the federal judge and court that ruled on the matter, shutting down the pipeline during the review would not cause major economic disruption (like Energy Transfer Partners claimed), but could possibly give the Army corps justification to not do a full environmental review.
The Standing Rock Sioux disagree with the courts ruling. As Chairman Mike Faith stated:
“This pipeline represents a threat to the livelihoods and health of our Nation every day it is operational. It only makes sense to shut down the pipeline while the Army Corps addresses the risks that this court found it did not adequately study. From the very beginning of our lawsuit, what we have wanted is for the threat this pipeline poses to the people of Standing Rock Indian reservation to be acknowledged. Today, our concerns have not been heard and the threat persists.”
The fight against the DAPL has been ongoing for nearly two years. In July of 2016, the Standing Rock Sioux sued the Army Corps of Engineers, claiming that the pipeline destroyed scared sites and threatened their water supply. In June 2017 a judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the approval of the Dakota Access Pipeline did not undergo adequate study of its environmental consequences and ordered a new report to assess the risks.
Since beginning operations earlier this year, the pipeline has experienced leaks on three separate occasions.
The environmental review is estimated to be completed by April 2018.