$3.8 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline begins service

Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) said today that its Dakota Access Pipeline system has started commercially transporting crude oil. The commission also cited a third-party inspector that found ETP removed too many shrubs and trees along 380 miles of the pipeline in North Dakota.

Several Native American tribes also say the pipeline would destroy burial and prayer sites as well as culturally significant artifacts.

The pipeline took years to complete and has faced backlash from former President Barack Obama and environmental activists.

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its allies said then that the easement shouldn't have been granted without an environmental impact statement to identify risks to its treaty rights, including the water supply and sacred places. The 1,872-mile crude oil transport system became a symbol of the fight over American climate policy when members of the Sioux tribe opposed the construction and set up camp at Standing Rock. And now, the Dakota Access pipeline is in full service, moving hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil per day.

As The Two-Way reported, a federal judge in March denied a motion for a preliminary injunction to stop construction, clearing the way for the completion of the pipeline.

The Obama administration came to the protesters' rescue when Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works Jo-Ellen Darcy overruled the Army Corps of Engineers recommendation that the pipeline be approved.

Energy Transfer Partners reports the Dakota Access Pipeline will have about a dozen employees in each of the four states it operates, including IL.

The successful completion of construction and testing opens up a new route for up to 570,000 barrels of oil daily to be carried from major drilling areas in the Bakken oil formation to a major pipeline hub, where it can be carried to refiners or exporters on the Gulf Coast.

The Associated Press reported in early May that DAPL leaked 84 gallons of oil in South Dakota on April 4th. Fortunately, no waterways were affected in the incidents.

  • Zachary Reyes