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Dakota Access Owner Faces 48 Criminal Charges for Polluting Pennsylvania Water

You know Energy Transfer, the big fossil-fuelers who ran the Dakota Access pipeline through East River and now are begging the Trump Court to let them keep pumping oil across our prairie, even though the approval process was illegal?

Well, they’re going to be spending more time in talking pipelines in court, this time in Pennsylvania for breaking environmental protection laws and polluting water supplies:

The corporate developer of a multi-billion-dollar pipeline system that takes natural gas liquids from the Marcellus Shale gas field to an export terminal near Philadelphia was charged criminally on Tuesday after a grand jury concluded that it flouted Pennsylvania environmental laws and fouled waterways and residential water supplies across hundreds of miles.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced the sprawling case at a news conference at Marsh Creek State Park in Downingtown, where Sunoco Pipeline LP spilled thousands of gallons of drilling fluid last year. The spill, during construction of the troubled Mariner East 2 pipeline, contaminated wetlands, a stream and part of a 535-acre lake.

Energy Transfer, Sunoco’s owner, faces 48 criminal charges, most of them for illegally releasing industrial waste at 22 sites in 11 counties across the state. A felony count accuses the operator of willfully failing to report spills to state environmental regulators.

Shapiro said Energy Transfer ruined the drinking water of at least 150 families statewide. He released a grand jury report that includes testimony from numerous residents who accused Energy Transfer of denying responsibility for the contamination and then refusing to help [Michael Rubinkam, “Pipeline Developer Charged over Systematic Contamination,” Yahoo News, 2021.10.05].

Landowners along the Dakota Access route, from Herreid to Harrisburg, you might want to keep an eye out for black water in your taps.

Of course, if that kind of shoddy work happened in South Dakota, our state Republican Party would probably call it a great success.


  1. Mark Anderson 2021-10-06 16:28

    Well we get our water from a well and our neighbor was nice enough to stop using roundup. Maybe just ask them nicely?

  2. larry kurtz 2021-10-07 07:16

    President Joe Biden has never spoken publicly about the Dakota Excess pipeline, but in 2020 Senator, now Vice President Kamala Harris, signed onto a legal document urging a federal judge to revoke a key permit for the pipeline and to protect the integrity of a federal law governing environmental reviews of infrastructure projects.

    In 2017 a US District Court ordered the US Army Corps of Engineers to finish a review of ETP’s Dakota Excess pipeline, its impact on tribal interests and how a spill under the Oahe Dam would impact water rights for the Standing Rock, Cheyenne River, Yankton and Oglala Lakota nations. Mercenaries and National Guard troops used chemical weapons on many of the thousands of peaceful demonstrators camped on federal land near Cannon Ball where some 761 people were arrested between early August, 2016 and late February, 2017.

    Trump apparatchiks even referred to the American Indians and their compatriots as jihadists and insurgents.

  3. jerry 2021-10-07 09:15

    Minnesota police are on the payroll of Enbridge “Enbridge told the Guardian an independent account manager allocates the funds, and police decide when protesters are breaking the law. But records obtained by the Guardian show the company meets daily with police to discuss intelligence gathering and patrols. And when Enbridge wants protesters removed, it calls police or sends letters.”

    NOem sends National Guard to the border for private companies, as does Minnesota. Why don’t we simply get rid of the Department of Defense and give each citizen those millions to consolidate and defend their own personal ideals. Cut out the middleman.

  4. Mark Anderson 2021-10-07 22:45

    Jerry our local shortstop Governor tried making any protest a potential felony. The law got shot down in court immediately. The freedom loving horse medicine party only wants freedom on its own terms. Meanwhile their own felonious insurrectionists who tried to stop the traditional change of power were just “visiting” the capital and are just good Americans who should be let go.

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