by Josh Nelson
In a surprise move on Sunday, the Army Corps of Engineers denied the easement (PDF) needed for the Dakota Access pipeline to cross Lake Oahe, effectively blocking the construction of the pipeline from moving forward at this time.1, 2
This is a tremendous victory for the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, other indigenous leaders and the Iowa landowners who have led the fierce and principled grassroots resistance to the pipeline.
While this fight is not over yet, Sunday’s announcement was a major setback for the pipeline and a testament to the power of grassroots activism. Nearly 500,000 CREDO members have taken action against the pipeline by signing petitions, calling the White House, pledging to resist arrest to stop the pipeline’s construction in Iowa and joining rapid response rallies against the pipeline from coast to coast.
To celebrate this amazing people powered victory and thank the heroic Water Protectors who led this fight by putting their bodies on the line, please share our “Thank you Water Protectors”
Just like with the Keystone XL pipeline, pundits and experts dismissed opposition to the Dakota Access pipeline as a lost cause with no chance of success. Once again we’ve shown that when progressives stand together and fight for what’s right, we can take on seemingly impossible fights and win. We’ve also proven yet again that grassroots resistance and direct action provide a viable roadmap for stopping pipelines and keeping fossil fuels in the ground where they belong.
CREDO is proud to have helped fund the opposition to the Dakota Access pipeline. Our members made significant financial contributions to some of the groups leading the fight, including the Red Warrior Camp, the Bold Alliance,and 350.org. Another key group in the resistance to the Dakota Access pipeline, Honor the Earth, is one of the 15 organizations CREDO members are funding in December.
While Sunday’s permit denial was a major victory, it is important to understand that this fight is not over yet. As we saw with the Keystone XL pipeline, the oil industry will not give up easily – especially when a multi-billion dollar pipeline project is at stake.
In its memo announcing the easement denial, the Army Corps of Engineers said it would look for alternative locations for the pipeline to cross the Missouri River and conduct an environmental study of alternate routes. We also know that Donald Trump – who reportedly has financial stakes in several of the companies involved in the pipeline – supports the pipeline’s construction. Meanwhile, the companies behind the pipeline released a statement overnight claiming they “fully expect to complete construction of the pipeline without any additional rerouting.”4
We don’t yet know exactly what the attempts to bring the Dakota Access pipeline back to life will look like, but we do know this: CREDO will continue fighting with every tool at our disposal to make sure the Dakota Access pipeline is never completed.
We will need your continued activism and help to make sure the Dakota Access pipeline is never built and to proceed the crucial work of keeping fossil fuels in the ground. Today we celebrate, tomorrow we continue the fight.
If you haven’t yet, please share the good news and thank the brave Water Protectors who led this fight.
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