Dakota Access Pipeline

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The Dakota Access Pipeline is a petroleum pipeline that would have run through, or at least near, the Standing Rock Native American reservation in North Dakota if Obama had not canceled its lease. It is alleged to violate age-old treaties made with the Sioux, and provoked protests that led to Obama demanding its rerouting.

On January 24, 2017, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to advance the construction of the pipeline under "terms and conditions to be negotiated". The order would expedite the environmental review that Trump described as "incredibly cumbersome, long, horrible permitting process."[1]

The pipeline finished construction in April 2017, and has been operational since June 2017.[2]

How close to the Standing Rock reservation?[edit]

The maps showing that the pipeline would have run through the Standing Rock reservation were based on a treaty signed in the 1830s. This treaty was superseded by another from the 1870s. The current map for the Standing Rock reservation shows that the pipeline would not have run through any portion of the reservation, although it would have approached within a few miles of it.

It would have come near Lake Oahe, and the potential threat to the local water supply did merit serious attention. But claims that this lake was "scared to the Sioux for centuries" are bogus -- the lake didn't exist until it was created by Oahe Dam in 1948. (Ironically, the construction of this dam displaced many Native Americans who had previously been living near the river's shoreline.)


  1. Trump seeks to revive Dakota Access, Keystone XL oil pipelines By Steven Mufson & Juliet Eilperin (January 24, 2017) The Washington Post.
  2. "Dakota Access pipeline starts transporting oil to customers". New York Daily News. The Associated Press. June 1, 2017. http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/dakota-access-pipeline-starts-pumping-oil-article-1.3212637. Retrieved June 10, 2017. 

External links[edit]