Dakota Access Pipeline expansion sparks battles in four states

The battle to stop the expansion of the Dakota Access Pipeline is going on in four states: North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois. The laws governing oil pipelines, unlike gas pipelines, are different in every state.

  1. In North Dakota, the Standing Rock Sioux tribe intervened in the proposed expansion before the ND Public Service Commission. A November 13 hearing lasted 15 hours. For more on events in North Dakota see: https://oilprice.com/Latest-Energy-News/World-News/Worlds-Most-Notorious-Pipeline-Battle-Is-Heating-Up-Again.html.
  2. In late October, South Dakota’s Lincoln County Board approved a conditional use permit for the requested pumping station. However, the pumping station would be built just outside of Harrisburg, and its Planning Commission has voted not to approve the construction. It’s unclear how this situation will be resolved
  3. Following an informational notice filed by Dakota Access regarding its intent to construct a pumping station, the Iowa Utility Board has determined that the proposed increase in flow of oil through the pipeline requires Dakota Access to submit an amended permit for review. For details see: https://iub.iowa.gov/press-release/2019-09-06/iub-orders-dakota-access-file-permit-amendment-increasing-pipeline-capacity.
  4. And the Illinois Commerce Commission is proceeding with its review process. You can access all the associated documents at: https://www.icc.illinois.gov/docket/CaseDetails.aspx?no=19-0673.

Dr. James Hansen, former head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, has submitted written testimony in both Iowa and Illinois, and has calculated that this expansion would create emissions equivalent to 20 million cars per year.

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