NoDAPL Fight Moves From Courts to White House

It was very welcome news when President Biden cancelled the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline.

There are several developments related to the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL). At a February 10 hearing the US Army Corps of Engineers will have to explain how it plans to proceed in response to a US Court of Appeals ruling that it had not conducted a full environmental impact review, which invalidated the federal permit to cross beneath the Missouri River. And last month the Westchester Fire Insurance Company notified Energy Transfer Partners that it was cancelling a bond for the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) segment in Iowa.

U.S. District Judge James Boasberg had set a status hearing for Feb. 10 to discuss the impact of an April 2020 order that the Corps had not adequately considered how an oil spill under the Missouri River might affect Standing Rock’s fishing and hunting rights, or whether it might disproportionately affect the tribal community.

BISMARCK, N.D. — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers must outline its plans for the Dakota Access oil pipeline after an appeals court confirmed the line is operating without a key permit, a federal judge said Wednesday. 

U.S. District Judge James Boasberg has set a status hearing for Feb. 10 to discuss the impact of Tuesday’s opinion by the D.C. Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals that upheld Boasberg’s ruling ordering the Corps to conduct a full environmental impact review. Opponents of the pipeline want it shut down immediately. 

Boasberg said in his one-sentence order that the Corps needs to show how it “expects to proceed” without a federal permit granting easement for the $3.8 billion, 1,172-mile (1,886 kilometer) pipeline to cross beneath Lake Oahe, a reservoir along the Missouri River, which is maintained by the Corps. 

Judge: Corps must decide next move on Dakota Access pipeline
By Associated Press Jan. 27, 2021

WASHINGTON – On January 7th, 2021 the Westchester Fire Insurance Company, a subsidiary of international insurance corporation Chubb, notified Energy Transfer Partners that it was cancelling a crucial $250,000 bond for the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) segment in Iowa. Publication of this bond cancellation comes just days after a federal appeals court largely sided with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe upholding lower court decisions that revoked a key permit for the line and required a federal agency to conduct a lengthy environmental review. 

Surety bonds are used to protect the public from having to pay for any damages or pollution created by existing projects. 

The following is a statement from Indigenous Environmental Network:  

“Dakota Access Pipeline has no federal easement. It’s now losing insurance coverage on the state-level which is a requirement for Iowa’s state permit. It is time for President Biden to take action and shut down the Dakota Access Pipeline. This project is a danger to all communities along its path, including the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux Nations. It’s time to end this saga and do what’s right. Shut down DAPL.” 

Critical Dakota Access Pipeline Bond Cancelled in Iowa

Date: 02/04/2021 NoDAPL Fight Moves From Courts to White House.

The Lakota People’s Law Project is mounting a massive advocacy campaign directed to the president to shut down the Dakota Access pipeline.

On Jan. 26, 2021, a D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an earlier, lower-court decision to vacate the federal permits for the Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL). The first ruling, handed down by a D.C. District Court in March 2020, ordered the Army Corps of Engineers to conduct a full Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Notably, despite multiple legal rulings mandating further environmental review, none had the effect of stopping DAPL’s operations. These hard-fought legal victories for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe are therefore somewhat hollow. It has become clear that the grassroots must mount a comprehensive public pressure campaign and inspire President Joe Biden to take executive action.

NoDAPL Fight Moves From Courts to White House, Lakota People’s Law Project

On Jan. 19, Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Mike Faith was joined by three additional Lakota tribal leaders in signing a letter to then-president elect Biden demanding that oil flow through DAPL be shut off pending a full environmental impact assessment. Another letter, signed by more than 75 Indigenous women leaders, also asked Biden to stop DAPL and other pipelines, including KXL and Line 3.

So, with all of these requests by Indigenous leaders, why hasn’t Biden taken action?

The legal and political issues surrounding DAPL are complex. To summarize, the Army Corps of Engineers is under the purview of the Department of Defense which, in turn, is under the purview of the Executive Branch. The head of the Executive Branch is, of course, the president, and therefore, the current administration holds much sway over the Corps’s activities. The bottom line is that the recent change in administration means a big opportunity for activists to have a bigger impact.

In Dec. 2016 (the last full month of Obama’s presidency), the Army Corps denied DAPL’s permit to cross the Missouri River. This halted construction and mandated a full Environmental Impact Statement — a process that usually takes years. Unfortunately, right after taking office, Trump reversed that decision, issuing an executive order and presidential permits to continue construction and operation. Then, in June of 2017, when given the chance, D.C. District Court Judge James Boasberg failed to stop the oil despite ruling that DAPL’s permits violated certain aspects of NEPA.

The upshot is that, after years of additional wrangling in court — which led to the various court rulings against DAPL’s permits — the pipeline still continues to operate. The next court hearing is scheduled for Feb. 10, 2021. But before then, the courts have requested that the Army Corps make a political decision concerning whether oil should continue to flow through DAPL. In other words, the judicial branch has tasked an executive branch agency with deciding whether a pipeline without a permit ought to be allowed to operate as an “encroachment” on federal land.

For justice activists, it’s not enough to wait and see if the Corps will make the right decision. It’s incumbent upon us to work together from every corner of the Earth, to be the change we want to see. Biden has the power to assert executive power and stop this pipeline. When he canceled the Keystone XL pipeline, he showed his commitment to environmental action and respect for Indigenous voices. Now he must take the next step by ending DAPL. If you have not already done so, please join our movement at this critical moment. Show your support for the people of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Tell Biden to take executive action, and share our call widely. Let’s stop the illegal flow of oil, once and for all.

NoDAPL Fight Moves From Courts to White House, Lakota People’s Law Project

A powerful video from our friends at the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and Earthjustice, written and directed by Josué Rivas. Our pipeline fight won’t end until we end the Dakota Access pipeline and win justice for Standing Rock Nation.

Tȟokáta He Miyé – My Name Is Future (Produced by Standing Rock & Earthjustice)

Tell Biden: End DAPL Now! (lakotalaw.org)

Dear President Biden,

Thank you, sincerely, for keeping your campaign promise to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline (KXL). You’ve taken a necessary step in stopping the desecration of sacred lands with unwanted, unneeded pipelines which endanger critical, life-giving water systems in Lakota Country.

But please don’t stop there. It’s also time to end the illegal Dakota Access pipeline (DAPL) once and for all.

DAPL poses a critical threat to Lake Oahe and the Missouri River, the primary source of fresh drinking water for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and millions of others. DAPL’s oil continues to flow even as its environmental approval process has been ruled insufficient by a U.S. District Court.

Please continue to use the power of your office to work closely with Native American tribes and show that you take Indigenous concerns seriously. Appointing Deb Haaland as Secretary of the Interior was a perfect start, and canceling KXL was an excellent follow-up. Now, please listen to the leaders of tribal nations and to people the world over when we say: DAPL must be next. Respect our water and our lives.

It’s time to replace outdated, dangerous fossil fuel infrastructure with renewable energy. You can build the world of tomorrow and a sustainable future for the generations to come.

With respect and in hope for a better future,


A rise of more than 5°C could happen within a decade, possibly by 2026. Humans will likely go extinct with a 3°C rise and most life on Earth will disappear with a 5°C rise. In the light of this, we should act with integrity.

From the post ‘When Will We Die?’, at:
https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/…/when-will-we-die.html
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