President Trump is wasting no time with his executive orders and today and signed one that will cause civil unrest. This morning the President signed two orders that will revive the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines. Specifically, the Dakota Access pipeline has been a site of a strong protest by The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe. Reuters reports:
The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, whose reservation is adjacent to the proposed Dakota pipeline, won a key victory when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in early December turned down ETP’s request for an easement to tunnel under the nearby Missouri River.
Most of the pipeline was complete by the summer of 2016, except for a small section under Lake Oahe, a reservoir that forms part of the river.
The Army later said it would begin an environmental assessment that could delay the project further. It was not clear if Trump’s expected order on Tuesday would supersede that move.
The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has protested the pipeline because it claims that it will poison their water reservoir. Environmentalists are not pleased with this move.
The moves are likely to spark a new fight with environmentalists. Even before Trump’s orders were official, Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune put out a statement blasting what he called the “dangerous” decision.
“The Keystone pipeline was rejected because it was not in the country’s interest, and the environmental review of the Dakota Access Pipeline was ordered because of the threats it poses to the Standing Rock Sioux. Nothing has changed. These pipelines were a bad idea then and they’re a bad idea now,” he said.
There is no doubt that implications of this pipeline being completed will do good things for the economy. The building of the pipeline will create jobs and some suggest could drop the price of gas. However, some would say at what cost? Was a study done to see if the pipeline would damage the reservoir? These are questions that haven’t been answered. If the reservoir will be ok then continue with the project but if it will damage a nation’s water supply it’s not worth it.