Letter to the Editor | Victory for Standing Rock

U.S. District Judge James Boasberg has revoked the permits for the Dakota Access pipeline pending a full environmental review.

DAPL has been an ongoing battle to protect tribal lands and tribal rights to hunt, fish and participate in traditional ceremonies. Chase Iron Eyes, the Lakota attorney who has been unfairly persecuted for his peaceful protests, has now won a major victory. He has posted a YouTube video thanking all his supporters.

Near the end of his term, President Barrack Obama had halted the pipeline project at Standing Rock in North Dakota and initiated an environmental investigation to be completed before granting a permit to continue. Soon after, President Trump ordered a stop to the investigation and granted the permit.

Now Judge Boasberg has revoked that permit and ordered the continuation of the environmental investigation due to at least three major concerns:

  • DAPL’s inadequate leak detection system.
  • The company’s dreadful history of spills needs to be addressed. Sunoco, the company behind DAPL, has one of the poorest safety records of any company in the industry. From 2006 to 2016, there were 276 incidents resulting in over $53 million in property damage.
  • DAPL’s failure to account for adverse repercussions of a “worst case” spill; what would the company do in the case of damages to hunting and fishing and ceremonial land?

Although expansion has halted, there are still flows in already existing pipelines. Hopefully this will also be stopped as there have already been numerous leaks.

According to an ancient Lakota prophecy, a black snake would slither over our country bringing death and destruction to Mother Earth and her people. It seems this prophecy has come to pass. The metaphor refers to the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Eliida Lakota, Pekin

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