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Army Corps Pauses Dakota Access, Nixes Cannonball Crossing, Demands Reroute

The Army Corps of Engineers has told Dakota Access they have to wait to finish their pipeline. Working on a Sunday, Corps Assistant Secretary for Civil Works Jo-Ellen Darcy said the Corps will not approve an easement to lay the Bakken oil pipeline under Lake Oahe near the Missouri–Cannonball confluence.

The decision comes as hundreds, possibly thousands of veterans were arriving to swell the ranks of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and other protestors encamped along the river since spring to oppose Dakota Access and one day before the soft deadline the Corps had given protestors to vacate Corps land near the pipeline construction route.

The decision does not cancel the pipeline; it only delays it, perhaps by months, as the Corps says it plans to work with Energy Transfer Partners to “explore alternate routes for the pipeline crossing”… routes which inevitably must cross the Missouri River somewhere in North Dakota and thus pose the same threat to water quality downstream on Standing Rock as the now-nixed Cannonball crossing.

However, this delay does push completion of the pipeline past January 1. Back in August, when Dakota Access officials were fighting the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s efforts to block the pipeline, company VP Joey Mahmoud made the following argument in court:

In connection with its long-term transportation contracts with 9 committed shippers, Dakota Access has committed to complete, test and have DAPL in service by January 1, 2017. The long-term transportation contracts give shippers a right to terminate their commitments if DAPL is not in full service per the contract deadline. Meanwhile, faced with an uncertain delay, shippers would need to determine alternative sources for secure, reliable transportation of crude oil supplies to the refineries. These costs cannot be recovered and loss of shippers to the project could effectively result in project cancellation [emphasis mine; Joey Mahmoud, Declaration in Support of Dakota Access, LLP’s Opposition to Plaintiffs’ Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe vs. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Case No. 1:16-CV-01534 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, August 18, 2016. paragraph 36; quoted in Cathy Kunkel and Clark Williams-Derry, “The High-Risk Financing Behind the Dakota Access Pipeline: A Potential Stranded Asset in the Bakken Region of North Dakota,” Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, 2016.11.16].

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe feels they have won. Expressing gratitude to the Obama Administration for “tremendous courage” and “a new approach to our nation-to-nation relationship,” Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II says his people “look forward to being able to return home and spend the winter with our families and loved ones.”

The Corps decision means the protestors can go home for a bit; if the shippers bail on their contracts, those protestors won’t need to return… at least not until Energy Transfer Partners or an eager Bakken buyer decides to make a play for connecting and filling the 99% of the pipe that is already in the ground.


  1. mike from iowa 2016-12-04

    ETP is most likely perched on Drumpf’s lap whining about being treated badly and demanding Drumpf personally install the pipe under Oahe hizownself.

  2. jerry 2016-12-04

    This DAPL was a crooked deal to begin with. The crooks segmented the pipeline so they could fast track it and then they ran into a bunch that would not budge. Now, we must look at the way Chris Nelson and the State of South Dakota so willingly put us all in jeopardy, knowing full well of the deceit. Their cavalier attitude towards our states water is more than disgusting, it borders on criminal.

  3. Roger Cornelius 2016-12-04

    Standing Rock, indigenous people from around the country and people that care about clean water have won round I.
    Round II will come on January 20 when Trump is sworn in and will immediately restore the project that he is invested in.
    Not to worry, the Standing Rock and tribes from around the country are preparing for Trump and his thugs.
    It is great that all those that supported Standing Rock will get a break in time for Christmas.
    I have never been so impressed and proud of my Native American brothers and sisters from around the country that stood together for a common cause and have won.
    Think about it, big oil can’t and won’t push Indians around anymore.

  4. moses6 2016-12-04

    What will the draft dodger say now ,That it was rigged.

  5. moses6 2016-12-04

    What will photo op Thune, Slick Mike Rounds and Marlboro Barbie say.

  6. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    After they review alternative routes, they could theoretically come back to the same location as having the least environmental impact: Any other route is going to be longer and encounter more habitat.

  7. Super Sweet 2016-12-04

    When Trump puts his hand on the Bible on January 20 at the swearing in it will be the first time. But it won’t be the first time he has swore.

  8. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    Also, the carbon footprint of the alternative route will be greater. In general more diesel fuel will need to be consumed in constructing a new longer and/or wider path. A small price to pay for some, but it is definitely not a carbon-neutral choice.

  9. grudznick 2016-12-04

    I suspect this is all a giant crock of oil.

    They can re-route all they want but it has to go under the river and cross the Army take-lines no matter what. Put it upstream from these Indians’ reservation or downstream from somebody else but it has to go under the river.

    I just bet you a full serving of gravy-taters there are little miners down there right now digging the tunnel this oil will eventually flow thru, and that the Greenpiece will not pick up all the poop left by these protesters and vandals.

  10. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    One more…if it is longer, and the probability of a leak occurring is roughly the same over any kilometer of pipe, then mandating the extra length boosts the chances of a leak.

    That probability per year is still small, and may be worth it for opponents/protectors, but it still strikes me as ironic that the end result of the protests would be to increase the risk of a leak.

  11. mike from iowa 2016-12-04

    If only they hadn’t deferred to them there white people in Bismark, the pipeline could be merrily polluting the other side of the Missouri. (in theory)

  12. grudznick 2016-12-04

    It’s all about jobs for professional protesters, Dr. McT. And they won’t be there much longer after the train bridge is build to carry the buckets of oil across the river, back and forth, safely.

  13. leslie 2016-12-04

    Wouldn’t be surprised if it goes over the river at a narrow point of the river, in a pipe. maybe downtown Bismarck!! Doc, you should go up there and look around rather than guess how its going to be worse now. Cut from the same cloth as grudz, unfortunately? CORPS are actually a bunch of scientists. And Standing Rock has been dealing with the river, the reservoir and the CORPS since the beginning. They know what they are doing.

    Awesome Standing Rock.

    You are in the defender’s position in the sacred hoop and are helping us turn around our fossil fuel energy use. Courageous, courageous, courageous people! Law enforcement has perhaps learned brutality is un-American, and thanks to the many vets including Rep HI, D.Tulsi Gabbard for their presence.

  14. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04


    The intent is to choke off a means of delivering fossil fuel, but apparently how you power your SUV by wind power is your problem.

    And there are plenty of SUVs and trucks at the camp…as shown on CNN.

  15. gtr 2016-12-04

    No Robert, one of the main problems is exactly what Jerry mentioned, they segmented the pipeline so they could fast track it. According to Winona LaDuke, who has plenty of experience fighting these oil pipelines, this is what the oil industry is doing all over the country.

    As for DAPL, according to Rep. Tulsi Gabbard on her facebook page, Dave Archambault was successful in also getting an Environmental Impact Statement for the entire pipeline whereas before, there was a less stringent Environmental Assessment.

    Even with this victory today, the folks at Standing Rock understand this is temporary until we see what happens after January 20. Nevertheless, it is good day for the water protectors!

  16. Porter Lansing 2016-12-04

    The alternative crossing is about 20 miles south and crosses the river, above the water for proper surveillance of leakage.

  17. Don Coyote 2016-12-04

    @grudznick: Why bother with transferring the oil to a train and back to a pipeline. Talk about increasing the chances of a spill by needlessly handling oil multiple times. Why not just build a bridge for the pipeline like there is in Plattsmouth Ne? There is a bridge crossing there that supports 3 separate pipelines. There are also 3 buried pipelines in the vicinity which cross the Missouri.

  18. Leo 2016-12-04

    Any reroutes are going to involve eminent domain again. Wonder how that will work?

  19. grudznick 2016-12-04

    Why burn oil at all, Mr. Coyote? These protesters surely will hang around for a few dozen years, living in wigwams and burning buffalo fat to keep their phones warm enough to surf the internets.

  20. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    I understand winning and losing, so you have to take your victories in life when you can get them :^), so I will stipulate that is a good day to be one of the protestors/protectors.

    But if the interest is to truly get off of fossil fuel, then I would have liked to have seen efforts to power vehicles by charging batteries with wind power. That would have been leading by example….if that cannot work for the Native Americans, then how is that going to work for everyone else?

  21. jerry 2016-12-04

    Here is a damn good lawyer telling of how our South Dakota PUC colluded with lawbreakers regarding the DAPL. This is a conspiracy that the powers to be knew full well what was going on and South Dakota government allowed it anyway. It is a 8 minutes long but Mr. Kennedy explains if perfectly. I think Marty Jackley should man up and investigate the PUC for this kind of corruption that we see all the time here.

  22. Donald Pay 2016-12-04

    If there is an official NEPA finding by the Corps that an EIS must be written, then that will have to be done before any decisions are made, unless there is a successful legal challenge. An EIS could take some time, or it could be fast tracked. The EIS could suggest other alternatives are better, or it could even put forth the “no action” alternative as the preferred action. Whatever the EIS says, of course, and whatever the decisions is could be taken to court, unless there is a law from Congress that suspends NEPA (a federal law) for this particular easement. Lots to ponder.

  23. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    Is the overall carbon footprint of the requisite construction dealt with in the EIS?

  24. John 2016-12-04

    You bet they are going to re-route the pipeline. The nation cannot afford another “Bonus March” catastrophe in the age of twitter and facebook. The first strong-arm put down of veterans on a Bonus March led to the tear gassing, burning, and deaths of several veterans of the Great War. It was a debacle for Hoover and MacArthur – which would be worse with 24/7 media.

    Also recall the safety record of pipelines is far from six-sigma safe.

    Uh, no wonder that Bismarck did not want the pipeline anywhere near their town.

  25. Donald Pay 2016-12-04

    Dr. McTaggart,

    Not sure that they would consider the carbon footprint, but if this works like most EISs you will have the opportunity to ask for that.

  26. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-04

    Trump may not care as much about carbon…and an EIS may be more about effects on natural habitat, water quality, etc. instead.

  27. Don Coyote 2016-12-04

    @Jerry: Kennedy is a hypocrite and a slug. Once disbarred from the New York Bar for heroin use, Kennedy gets his wallet filled with checks from Kennedy Trust owned Mokeen Oil and Kenoil. The trust also owns a 1/3 of Arctic Oil.

  28. Moses6 2016-12-04

    It’s arigge system wait till photo op Thune has. Something to say about this and slick MIke andrthe subsidy queen.

  29. jerry 2016-12-04

    Hey there coyote, ya want to know what I smell? Victory. I could give a damn, the dude is correcto mundo and this was illegal as it can be. To me, all of this proves that there is still hope in this great experiment called America. There is still hope that we can honor our contracts with the very folks who have only wanted that from the time those treaties and contracts were written. As noted by this slug of an attorney, at least the Keystone had done all of its easements and I am sure that those oil companies you name all followed the letter of the law as well. What bothers you the most Coyote? Is it that the Indians won a hug victory or is it because you did not have the balls to defend your own water rights as a citizen of this state? Either way, the protectors at Cannonball, North Dakota, freezing their arse’s off, defended your water. You owe them the respect they deserve.

  30. jerry 2016-12-04

    President Elect Trump says he is gonna build infrastructure. I cannot think of a better way to get started than rail transportation. I support that and hope that we are able to get that rail system in place here for all of our needs, including people transportation. Dream big Coyote or die. Me, I am thinking about that living thing. Rail is a great way to transport anything, save our roads for electric cars. Tesla has a charging station in Murdo, who would have thunk it. We use rail all the time and have since the 1870’s when we connected the two coasts, time to put it back into play here. Dream big Coyote, ya gotta dream big to be able to save this blue marble from ourselves.

  31. jerry 2016-12-04

    Coyote, there is a refinery right in Dickinson, North Dakota. Good news, no?

  32. jerry 2016-12-04

    Coyote, at least try to stay current. Your Reuters report is a year old. Geesh, like arguing with my brothers kids.

  33. Roger Cornelius 2016-12-04

    Why do grudz’s and numbskulls like him think the protectors are paid professional protestors?
    There is absolutely no evidence that anyone is paying these courageous men and women.
    The Indians and all other nationalities at Cannon Ball believe in what they are doing and willing to make sacrifices to support the Standing Rock Tribe.

  34. Porter Lansing 2016-12-04

    Just heard that since the announcement was made, 20,000 car horns haven’t stopped blaring and everyone else is dancing. Thank you WATER PROTECTORATE, y’all have the finest character in the Dakotas. ??????

  35. jerry 2016-12-04

    Roger, don’t let them sour the sweetness of this victory. This is a time of year that has been very tragic in the history of this place. At Wounded Knee, in December 1890, one of the greatest mass murders in American history took place. In this December 2016, the descendants of this great tragedy now have a triumph to add to the winter count. In my view, this triumph does not lessen the tragedy of the past, but should be a reminder of the power of believing in yourself and your cause to force the fulfillment of the promises made in the treaties between two great nations.

  36. jerry 2016-12-04

    A loss to whom Coyote? Last I looked MDU was pretty profitable. Tesoro is a Fortune 500 company with 6,000 employees with revenues of 37.5 Billion, I feel a tear coming to my eye. But you do bring up an interesting item. If the refinery is unprofitable within a stone’s throw of the oil, how would it be profitable being transferred in a pipeline to who knows where? It looks like it would have been another giveaway to big oil, like they need another subsidy. Headlines should be “Water Protectors Save Federal Government Taxpayer Dollars” I am sure that you would approve.

  37. Adam 2016-12-05

    OMFG. It’s more important, for some, to manufacture the point that by protecting Native property rights, in this case, it is somehow a failure of America to look out for the greater good.

    Shame. The very white people who would die to protect their very own property owners rights somehow, disgustingly, look down on Native people for doing the very same.

  38. Adam 2016-12-05

    Trumptardlicans – and don’t say you “didn’t vote for him” – everyone can see the numbers – you balogna believing meat heads.

  39. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-12-05

    I can see Dr. McTaggart’s point: any reroute now means ETP will dig up and endanger more farmland, wildlife habitat and private property rights than it would have if the Corps had permitted this easement. That’s simple geometry. Plus, the Missouri River will still be in danger.

    Porter, there’s no way the pipeline will seek a crossing further south, is there? Move south, and they must cross reservation land, and there’s no way the company will take that chance. To go south, they’d have to loop all the way around the Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux Reservations past Faith and Howes and then take 34 to Pierre and pick the path of least resistance back to the line already laid in East River—I’m guessing that’s more than 350 miles of new pipe that leaves 180 miles of existing pipe unused.

    Trump may support the pipeline in which he has his financial interest, but that IEEFA report from November 16 contends that the oil economy does not. Dakota Access was born in 2014, when oil was $95 a barrel and when EIA projected Bakken production would approach 2,000,000 barrels per day by 2020. Oil is only now climbing back to $55 a day. Oil production in the Bakken is now 950,000 bpd, down a quarter from its Dec 2014 peak. Five existing pipelines can handle 760,000 bpd; two existing ND refineries can slurp up another 88,000 bpd, and a third refinery slated to open by 2018 will take another 20,000 bpd. That’s 868,000 bpd. Current contracts appear to oblige 100,000 to 250,000 bpd by rail, much to the Northwest. There is thus a strong argument that there’s no production for Dakota Access to move… and even the Führer can’t will more oil from the ground if the market doesn’t support it.

  40. Darin Larson 2016-12-05

    The Fuhrer is going to have the corps approve an easement in short order when he assumes the reigns of power. He will find no need for an EIS.

    But there will be a long term impact. Companies will think twice about building pipelines without all the necessary approvals. It is also going to be the nail in the coffin for the profitability of this pipeline, which was dubious at its inception.

  41. Porter Lansing 2016-12-05

    @cah … That’s the crossing that’s been on the drawing board for a month. Maybe they’ve found another. Maybe with OPEC raising the price of crude something unexpected will happen.

  42. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    OTOH, this is a korporation with the backing of a solid wingnut congress and a total nutjob soon to be swor…..coronated as potus who has monetary interests at stake. The coronation is barely a month away and my best guess is ETP won’t bother to look for a re-route. They will hunker down with Drumpf’s tiny thang in their mouths and wait for his highness’ blessing to blast the Mighty Mo right where they are now.

    There isn’t much the new potus can do legally, but Drumpf has shown a callous, careless and dangerous disregard for presidential protocol with the blessings of right wing nut jobs in congress and elsewhere.

  43. Richard Schriever 2016-12-05

    Trump’s “infrastructure plan” doesn’t actually build anything. It is, essentially, a Federal Level TIF. It gives tax breaks to INVESTORS in private infrastructure projects – even those that have already been built – like the no stymied DAPL. So according to Trump’s “infrastructure plan”, the investors in DAPL will get a tax break – for what they have already done – whether it moves any oil or not.

  44. Craig 2016-12-05

    “The Trump approval of the pipeline would be a conflict of interest as he is invested in ETP. ”

    But didn’t you hear? Trump has said himself that the President cannot have a conflict of interest… so I guess there isn’t a story here. Besides, if anyone starts to ask about it all he has to do is tweet a few idiotic things about Saturday Night Live or some random nonsense about China and everyone will be so distracted they won’t even notice he restarts the pipeline.

  45. Craig 2016-12-05

    I had read previously that the ACOE had given the pipeline approval, then they pulled their approval. Does anyone know if this is accurate? If so, I would anticipate a massive lawsuit from the pipeline company with we the taxpayers ending up paying for what they have done so far plus a nice payment to their lawyers.

    On the other hand if it is true that final approvals hadn’t been granted, then it wasn’t too wise for them to begin construction. I can’t imagine how many millions have been spent burying pipe that may never be utilized. I just hope the workers have been paid before someone involved decides to file bankruptcy. Keep in mind with Trump in office bankruptcy makes you smart – it is merely a stepping stone to success, so it shall apparently become the new normal.

  46. Donald Pay 2016-12-05

    If the Corps has made an official finding for an EIS, Trump just can’t grant the easement or order the Corps to grant the easement. It now has to go through the process. We are a nation of laws, as my conservative friends tell me, except, of course those laws don’t apply to billionaires and the fossil fuel industry. We’ll see how things develop.

  47. jerry 2016-12-05

    The original way still looks like the most promising for DAPL. They would be able to run the pipe under or over the Missouri River at the point originally designed north of Bismark. Problem solved. Not south of Cannonball but north of Bismark. Or, they could move the oil by rail, with new safe cars for the trips to wherever needed.

    Since when is it a big deal for these guys to dig up farmland or any other kind of private property? As long as they do it by the law and there is a PUC that will ram it through without a care about property rights, there should not be a problem. The PUC’s in all the states involved, disregarded the United States Law to allow the segmented practice of building this DAPL, so the PUC does pretty much can as they please, unless they run into a new kind of Grange or other organization that says no.

  48. jerry 2016-12-05

    Thune, NOem and Rounds all blathered about the jobs jobs jobs that this pipeline was gonna give South Dakota. Thousands of them. There would be thousands of workers here in South Dakota spending money like crazy making South Dakota so rich that cows would now be hand fed beer personally by a dedicated caretaker. I have missed that Kobe Beef on the cheap here, so how much did South Dakota make on this illegal activity approved so quickly by our own PUC? It does look like our politicians fibbed to us as Daugaard now comes and says we are down 16% in sales tax receipts. How can that be with the promises they made?

  49. Adam 2016-12-05

    Watch Whitey whine about Native people’s standing on their figurative porch, cocking their figurative shotguns and telling pipeline people to get off their property. Redneck white guys should be able to find common ground, unity and understanding with Natuve peoples on THIS ISSUE. To bad double standards are a hallmark of racism, bias, insincerity, disingenuousness, inconsistency and just downright poor logic.

  50. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-05

    “The Army’s intervention sets an unsettling precedent, analysts and industry groups told Reuters, because Energy Transfer had undergone the necessary environmental reviews and permitting processes to move ahead with construction. ”

    “Energy Transfer Partners said in a statement the decision was politically motivated and it did not intend to reroute the line.”

  51. Roger Cornelius 2016-12-05

    Does anyone believe that the Fuhrer gives a tinker’s damn about conflicts of interests?

  52. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    ETP got permits after the fact in many cases and many places. If a korporation breaks the rules and gets away with it, it is all good. There are a number of iowa farmers that are/were not happy with ETP tactics in acquiring right’s of way from the very beginning.

  53. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    Pipelines aren’t as eternal as the lands and waters and the lands and waters are only as good as long as the pipeline lasts.

  54. Bill Dithmer 2016-12-05

    To think, this might have been avoided if the natives would have taken a seat at the table when the first meetings were held.

    Nowhere have I seen that the pipeline was stopped, only delayed. The only thing that has changed, is the timeline for completion.

    Suddenly, victory is moving the pipe. And all this time I thought that the only victory would be clean water. It wont matter where it is if it leaks so what was won?

    It seems like with all protest someone is either in the right place at the wrong time, or they are in the wrong place at the right time. In this case the right time was several years ago, and the right place would have been at the meetings that were held for that reason. Clean water is always worth the fight, but just moving the pipeline to another place is just bullcrap.

    If the leaders of these tribes really wanted to do something to help their people, they would be gathering together to figure out how they can save a way of life on the res after Trump takes office. Cuts are a commin folks, and that cant be good for anyone that lives on a reservation. All of Trumps cabinet picks should be telling you that the treaties are in jeopardy.

    Its time for real leaders to lead, and its time for the protesters to get out of the way while they are still healthy.

    The Blindman

  55. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-05

    I sort of feel the same way about mining practices in China regarding rare earths. Yes, we get the benefit from better wind turbines and clean energy, but since the environmental effects are somewhere else, somehow that is completely OK.

    But if the pipeline is going to be built, they can still make a positive contribution in two ways. First, lead by example and transition away from using fossil fuels for transportation. Second (and probably more easy to do), support clean water by helping to make the pipelines safer.

  56. Donald Pay 2016-12-05

    Regarding so-called “approvals” given by the Corps of Engineers for DAPL crossings, it is more complicated that what has been indicated by some here. The Corps’ earlier approvals were based on an environmental assessment (EA) completed by a contractor of DAPL. Other federal agencies, including EPA and the Department of Interior, objected to parts of the EA, and advised that an Environmental Impact Statement be written. An EA is not a full-blown Environmental Impact Statement, and is to be used for projects that are routine or likely to have non-significant impacts. While the Corps may have thought the impacts were “non-significant” three other federal agency thought differently.

    The Corps “approvals” of the project came in direct opposition to three other federal agencies. This usually does not happen, and suggests some other issues were at play. In my experience this only happens when there is incredible political pressure being applied from somewhere. I doubt it was from the President. Rushing an “approval” before these issues are thoroughly aired and hashed out is highly unusual.

  57. Roger Elgersma 2016-12-05

    Who would have guessed that the Army Corp of Engineers would have more heart for the people than our representatives in Washington and Pierre. Well the bar was low enough.

  58. jerry 2016-12-05

    If only the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe had opposed the DAPL since they first heard of it, wait. turns out the did When you stand against something for as long as these good folks have, that says determination to see it through, now we can see how it works.

  59. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    Doc, did I hear at one time there were some rare minerals discovered in Afghanistan while US troops were there getting killed regularly and that China was allowed to dig them? I’m pretty sure it was something along that order. You. being a scientist doing sciency stuff might have heard more about this.

  60. Bill Dithmer 2016-12-05

    Come on Jerry. The first meetings were held in 2010 and they didnt find out until 2014?

    The Blindman

  61. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    I’m betting if the water protectors stand down, DAPL will start digging under Oahe and have that job done in time for Drumpf’s coronation-permits or no.

  62. jerry 2016-12-05

    The original pipeline discussed is much different than the one that was just killed Blindman.

    Like Coyote said up posts, there are crossing made in Nebraska over the river. In the case of the DAPL, the crossing was going to be North of Bismark, North Dakota. That was not going to go through treaty lands. For some unknown reason, the builders suddenly decided to go south through Cannonball. Why do you think they did that?

  63. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    Thanks, Doc. You saved me some serious digging.

    Blindman, where did you get the 2010 date? Every article from different places say 2014 was the year DAPL was proposed.

  64. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    Ah-Rare Earth. I could use 20 or 30 minutes of Get Ready (on cassette). :)

  65. Bill Dithmer 2016-12-05

    In the artical Jerry linked it said they were making decisions about a rout in 14. There were meetings before that.

    The Blindman

  66. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-05

    There is growing interest in rare earth mining in the U.S., but we are also working on replacements for the rare earths in various technologies, as well as trying to recycle the rare earths we already have.

    If you want to do more wind and more energy storage and more energy efficient lighting, you presently need more rare earths…not the band ;^). That link above shows for every 40 metric tons of rock you typically get 250 kg of neodymium…and that is in good ore.

  67. Bill Dithmer 2016-12-05

    Whatever the time frame, you are missing my point.
    1. The pipeline will be built.
    2. And there are some very hard times coming to a reservation near you.

    i dont see any winners in ND, only people that didnt get what they wanted and still are calling ita victory. Or wasnt clean water the reason for the protest?

    Its confusing when natives dont trust white mans elections, as RC has said, and they wait until the plans are put in place before they bitch.

    this protest at this time means nothing compared to what is about to happen to the tribes. Unless their leaders pull their heads out of their butts, there wont be a res to go back to.

    The Blindman

  68. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    As for the meetings, seems I read DAPL basically shrugged off or ignored the Indians complaints when they did meet.

    It seems there will be a lot more protests as people in the Drumpf administration want to privatize millions of acres of federal lands on Indian reservations and mine the stuffing out of them and drill the oils and gasses and to hell with the residents. The decks are stacked against every American with this abomination coming.

  69. jerry 2016-12-05

    It would help if you would just stick to the facts Blindman. It seems that you are not to happy about the fact that the pipe will not go where it was being forced to, but it sure can be built if they follow the rules. As the original plan was to go North of Bismark, then by all means, go north. Maybe put that into Canada to go east to the St. Lawrence access to the Atlantic and the eastern seaboard for refining or raw to ship to Europe.

  70. mike from iowa 2016-12-05

    Gawd, Doc I gots a headache from trying to pronounce them new words. Wish you would have warned me.

    I noticed the so called smart bombs haven’t lived up anywhere near their reputations. Are they refundable?

  71. Roger Cornelius 2016-12-05

    It wouldn’t have mattered one bit if the Standing Rock Tribe came to the table early or not, DAPL in all their arrogance were intent on building the pipeline when they wanted.
    Throughout history, tribes have had to fight battles on several fronts at the same time. When Trump is inaugurated in January the Standing Rock Tribe and their fellow tribal support groups and non-tribal members will come together again to fight the pipeline.
    When Trump starts to defund tribal programs and agencies and rip up what treaties are left, there will be another contingent of Indians ready to fight him on those issue.
    Speaking of arrogance, it is also arrogant for anyone to think that tribes can do only one thing at a time and to do it the way they think it should be done.

  72. Bill Dithmer 2016-12-05

    Jerry, i dont care where its built. The fact is that it will be built somewherq
    Again, its about the future of the tribes, not where the damn pipe. Rosses the creek.

    The Blindman

  73. Douglas Wiken 2016-12-05

    The pipeline could go across a dam, or alongside a bridge. Keeping the pipe level or nearly so would mean only a few gallons need to leak to be detected, put it under the river with pipe high on ends and low in center and tens of thousands of gallons could leak undetected and when detected shutting if off at edges of river could still allow tens of thousands of gallons of crude and solvents to leak. If it goes under the river, it should be a double wall pipe system that makes leak detection long before the leak is a critical threat. The corporations try to do these lines the cheapest way possible with safety being only a secondary consideration. They also try to put them through areas where they think locals are ignorant hicks.

    Too bad the good doc hasn’t figured out a way to make nuclear-powered bull dozers and heavy trucks than the relatively insignificant amounts of pollution due to route changes could not be magnified into a real problem.

  74. jerry 2016-12-05

    North of Bismark, where it was originally intended and above the waters. Problem solved in that regard. Now, landowners in South Dakota should file a suit against the pipeline for fraud. The pipeline fraudulently convinced them that what they were doing was a legal act. Turns out that was not the case. President Elect Trump would sue their pants off for such a breach of legality. I smell class action suit, lets get’r going.

  75. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-05

    Hey….that is a great idea ;^).

    If the raison d’etre of the campaign is clean energy, then driving SUV’s back and forth to the protests and generating a longer route is not consistent with reducing the carbon footprint. Sounds like an Al Gore “Peace out, y’all” as he jets off back to Tennessee.

    If it is clean water, then a re-route basically shifts the leaks somewhere else, so somebody else’s water isn’t as clean. That is like Germany saying “we are nuclear free” and then importing nuclear-generated electricity from France.

    But you do bring up good points about designing the pipeline so that it is more robust and so that it could be more easily monitored. I’m on-board with that, and I’m not sure why the protesters/protectors didn’t demand it instead.

  76. jerry 2016-12-05

    Glad your in doc. Now, then, all they have to do is get the permits for that and we are good to go.

  77. Don Coyote 2016-12-05

    The major problem with pipelines crossing rivers is they become uncovered due to scouring from flood waters because the pipeline wasn’t buried deep enough, sometimes only a few feet below riverbed. The Dakota Access pipeline will be buried up to 90′ in some spots. Also the DAPL will use thicker steel than is used in normal segments.

  78. Darin Larson 2016-12-05

    Yaaa, Coyote, the pipe will be a whole 6 hundredths of an inch thicker under the river? Is that correct?

    It’s hard to have much peace of mind in an extra 6 hundredths of an inch. That’s not quite a sixteenth of an inch thicker.

    I’d rather see a double wall with a leak detection system in between the first and second wall. Oh, what the heck, out of sight, out of mind.

  79. jerry 2016-12-05

    Go north of Bismark and put it above the ground with double walled really really thick stuff like in Alaska. Reroute the pipeline to the original plan state and get the permits to get that baby going. Problem solved. In the meantime, affected landowners should file class action for the fraud they thought was eminent domain on an illegal project.

  80. Adam 2016-12-05

    Doc, I venture to guess that the protesters/protectors didn’t demand a safer pipeline across Native land, instead of completely opposing it altogether, because the company blatantly broke the law and started trespassing on private land and building it before anyone expected it – and it was still questionable if it were to be built across their land at all. Native people found that action way too offensive to honor the use of their land for such a purpose.

    Don’t have to be smart to know why Natives said no to the pipeline without compromise.

  81. Craig 2016-12-06

    The proposed route was 11 miles shorter than one of the alternatives considered, and it crossed fewer waterways. Per a report on NPR just yesterday, it was widely considered to be the least environmentally harmful path, so it was the “best” path possible and that was apparently documented in the ACOE report which was something like 1,200 pages long. I have no doubt when they evaluate everything they will come to the same conclusions. The decision to withhold permits is likely political, and the decision to start again will also be political.

    I believe there is already an existing pipeline that runs in the same area, so it seems someone had decided years ago that this was the best place to cross. I guess we will see what happens – but I think everyone agrees this is far from over.

  82. jerry 2016-12-06

    Natural gas is much different crossing the Missouri River than Bakken Oil Craig. While correct in the fact that there is a natural gas line crossing very close to the location of the DAPL, the lines themselves are quite different. In fact, I wish they were capturing the gas they now burn off at the fracking sites in North Dakota to be able to send along this natural gas pipeline from Canada.

    The solution is to put the pipeline in where it originally was plotted to be, north of Bismark. Or else, continue to transport by rail. Or better yet, leave it where it is for strategic storage. North Dakota and the rest of the planet would be better off just knowing it is there and moving on.

  83. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-06


    That tells me this isn’t really about a pipeline, clean energy, or clean water at all. It is just the most recent and convenient vehicle for bringing up historic grievances.

    But more likely this is a linear combination of all of those things, just with some people weighting one thing more than the other.

  84. jerry 2016-12-06

    The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe was against the crossing of their lands from when they first learned of that happening in 2014. This is about the clean water on their lands as promised in treaty contracts. The facts are that this pipeline was always illegal in the first place to begin with. Look at the segmented way in which they thought they were bypassing passed laws.

    The real questions that should be asked are why PUC’s are so complacent with big oil to allow the building of pipelines without the proper permits to do so? Why is that historical treaties end up being the defense for shabby elected officials and their in ability to do their jobs? I see that the Democratic Platform states the need for clean water, but I do not see the defense of those that are protecting it.

    Run that pipe through the proper channels of compliance and put it north of Bismark as originally planned. If it does not work there, continue to transport by rail or leave it.

  85. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-06

    But what if the present route has the least environmental impact? How do you square that with an interest in clean water?

  86. jerry 2016-12-06

    They had that figured out in their first proposal north of Bismark. That was going to be the best way because of engineers and environmental impact and all. At least that is what it always seems when you make a proposal. Now, the fact that they were not keen on being honest with doing those environmental impact agreements with the system as a whole, tells me that no matter what way they were going to go, it would meet the criteria. The only solution, get PUC’s on board with promises of whatever and do the segmented line as quickly as possible. When you get it all done, you simply say, oops. Standing Rock said no to them crossing their treaty lands. So here we are. No matter what, this thing was lawless from the get go.

  87. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-06

    Clean water alert in California…may affect fix for Flint.

    “McCarthy and Feinstein successfully slipped in long-desired language to provide drought relief to central and southern California. It would temporarily relax environmental standards and instruct federal officials to divert more water to farms and other users in the federal water infrastructure in the Golden State.

    That water wouldn’t therefore go through the sensitive Sacramento-San Joaquin Bay Delta and could likely harm endangered fish like the Delta smelt.”

  88. mike from iowa 2016-12-06

    OT but McCarthy has bigger problemos. Over half the residents in his district rely on government insurance of one kind or another.

    Drumpf can fix Flint’s water problems by bringing back all those manufacturing jobs like he promised. Then the people could drink really cheap Drumpf vintage wines. Is the Drumpf winery where the grapes is growed or on Twitter? One last little tidbit, Twitter is the only social media out of nine that won’t help Drumpf do a MUslim registry.

  89. Robert McTaggart 2016-12-07

    Interesting info:

    “One alternative the company considered called for the pipeline to cross the Missouri River north of Bismarck, about 50 miles upstream of the current path. That option was rejected because it was 10 miles longer and required more water and road crossings. It was also estimated to cost $22.6 million more than the current route.”

    “Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault has said the tribe does not oppose oil pipelines if they do not threaten water sources, environmentally sensitive areas or sacred sites. He said a route that would follow existing west-east and north-south oil pipeline corridors that avoid Missouri River crossings would be acceptable to him.”

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