UPDATE: The victory for the pipeline didn’t last long. The Obama administration has put construction on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers land on hold indefinitely.
Just breaking now from the Associated Press:
BREAKING: Federal judge denies Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's request to stop work on 4-state Dakota Access pipeline.
— The Associated Press (@AP) September 9, 2016
Energy Transfer Partners, the group behind the pipeline, is free to go ahead with construction at this point, though this hardly ends the legal battles. Or, I’m sure, the obstruction from the thousands of protesters who have flocked to southern North Dakota.
Keep in mind, this opinion is in response to a motion for an injunction against further construction while the Standing Rock tribe pursues their larger lawsuit against the pipeline. That suit is on-going, and in his order the judge indicated that there is to be another meeting in the case on September 16.
Losing this injunction fight isn’t a good sign for the tribe, and it’s an indication that both the pipeline company and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have followed the law, but it’s not the finish line for the legal wrangling either.
UPDATE: You can read the full opinion from the judge below.
Here’s an excerpt from the conclusion where it’s clear that the presence of an existing pipeline along the corridor where the Dakota Access line – news I wrote about earlier this week – would be built was not lost on the judge:
I haven’t read the entire document, but from the conclusion it sure doesn’t look like the tribe made a convincing case.