Pat Powers, whose party has brought us Donald Trump, has the tone-deafness to complain about Dakota Access Pipeline opponents using “scare tactics” to achieve their political objectives. Har de har har.
The long-time Big Oil tool also says that because Dakota Access has followed the rule of law, the pipeline should go through.
Except Dakota Access hasn’t followed the rule of law. They don’t have permission from the Army Corps of Engineers to cross their property near the Cannonball-Missouri confluence:
Corps spokesman Larry Janis said the easement is still under review, though the agency did issue Section 408 permission in late July that allows the easement to be written.
“They can’t build the project by accessing corps property from west to east across Lake Oahe,” Janis said of any current construction.
…The realization that the company still does not have an actual easement surfaced Wednesday in a federal district court in Washington, D.C., where the Sioux tribe’s request for an injunction to stop the pipeline pending its suit against the corps was heard. The court judge said he wants more time to study whether the corps failed to follow the National Historic Preservation Act and other federal laws in its environmental review of the project. The judge said he will rule on the injunction Sept. 9.
“Everybody thought they had it (easement),” said attorney Carolyn Raffensperger, executive director of the Science and Environmental Health Network. “This is really important information” [Lauren Donovan, “Corps Says Pipeline Still Needs Water-Crossing Easement,” Bismarck Tribune, 2016.08.25].
Hmmm… so if protestors don’t have the right to enter that publci property to exercise their free speech rights, it appears that, right now, Dakota Access has even less right to occupy and disrupt that public land with its profit-making activities. Rule of law, right, Pat?
And if Dakota Access doesn’t have permission to cross Army Corps property, why have we let Dakota Access gash its trench across South Dakota farm fields without the certainty that they can complete the project?