In North Dakota, water protectors resisting the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline have scored an historic victory. On Sunday, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers denied Energy Transfer Partners, the company behind the pipeline, a permit to drill underneath Lake Oahe on the Missouri River—officially halting construction. The pipeline is slated to carry crude oil from the Bakken oilfields of North Dakota through South Dakota, Iowa and into Illinois, where it’s slated to link up to another pipeline to carry the oil down to refineries in the Gulf. The project has faced months of resistance from the Standing Rock Sioux in North Dakota, members of more than 200 indigenous nations from across the Americas and thousands of their non-Native allies—all concerned the pipeline’s construction will destroy sacred Sioux sites and that a pipeline leak could contaminate the Missouri River, which serves as a water supply for millions. Standing Rock protester Maurine Archambault celebrated the news.
Maurine Archambault: “We’re slowly getting there, like winning this thing, but there’s going to be a few battles that we’re going to have to go through, whenever we’re going to win this thing, too.”