Dakota Access Crude Oil Pipeline Not a Done Deal

Coalition celebrates federal court throwing out DAPL’s permit

June 15th, 2017—Des Moines Iowa—Following a stunning federal court decision throwing out Dakota Access’ permit, the Bakken Pipeline Resistance Coalition demands that the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) shut down Dakota Access.

Yesterday, a federal judge released his opinion in a case that several Sioux Tribes had brought challenging the Army Corps of Engineers’ decision granting a permit to Dakota Access. In that opinion he said that “the Court agrees that it [the Corps] did not adequately consider the impacts of an oil spill on fishing rights, hunting rights, or environmental justice, or the degree to which the pipeline’s effects are likely to be highly controversial. To remedy those violations, the Corps will have to reconsider those sections of its environmental analysis upon remand by the Court.”

Today the Sierra Club and the Science and Environmental Health Network filed a motion with the Iowa Utilities Board to void the Iowa permit to Dakota Access because DAPL has not met all the conditions for that permit.

The Iowa Utilities Board granted Dakota Access a permit to cross the state of Iowa and to seize private land through eminent domain but on the condition that DAPL obtain the Army Corps of Engineers’ federal permit. Without the federal permit there is no basis for the finding of “public convenience and necessity”. Accordingly, the IUB must revoke the Iowa permit and shut down
the pipeline.

Statements from Coalition Members

Wally Taylor, attorney for the Sierra Club: “The federal court decision shows in stark detail why the Iowa Utilities Board should have granted Sierra Club’s motion for an environmental review of the pipeline impacts in Iowa. The Board failed in its duty to protect Iowa’s environment.”

Carolyn Raffensperger, executive director of the Science and Environmental Health Network: “The house of cards built by Dakota Access has come tumbling down. The Iowa Utilities Board
granted a permit to Dakota Access on the condition that it obtain all of the necessary permits, chief among them the permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. There is no federal permit. The IUB must shut this pipeline down.”

Matt Ohloff, Climate Justice Organizer with Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement: “It is still not too late for the Iowa Utilities Board to do the right thing and uphold their own rules to protect Iowans and our natural resources. We are thrilled the courts are stepping up to protect the people and the planet and uphold the law where our politicians and regulators have failed. Now the Iowa Utilities Board must do the same and revoke DAPL’s permit in Iowa.”

Mark Edwards, Bakken Pipeline Resistance Coalition: “This pipeline potential to spill roughly ONE million gallons of toxic crude oil in ONE hour into our vast tiling system leading directly into our drinking water supply should have been considered from the beginning by the IUB. How can three, now two, politically appointed people assume this risk for all of us for the benefit of an out-of-state corporation’s profit? Now the courts can assume some of this responsibility.”

Ed Fallon, director of Bold Iowa: “Like we’ve been saying, this fight’s not over, It’s time for our new governor to weigh in and tell the IUB it should cancel Dakota Access’ permit.”

Miriam Kashia of 100Grannies for a Livable future: “The poorly conceived, carelessly considered and executed rush to put this pipeline in Iowa’s soil and under Iowa’s rivers as speedily as possible has come back to bite DAPL. It’s not too late to do the right thing and get on the right side of history. Fossil fuels are a dying energy source. For all kinds of reasons, the IUB never should have issued this permit in the first place. Thank you to the courts for reason and justice!”