Tags

, , , ,

Protesters fighting construction on the Dakota Access Pipeline block a highway near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, on October 26. Facebook users are “checking in” at Standing Rock Indian Reservation in solidarity [Image: James MacPherson/AP].

Protesters fighting construction on the Dakota Access Pipeline block a highway near Cannon Ball, North Dakota, on October 26. Facebook users are “checking in” at Standing Rock Indian Reservation in solidarity [Image: James MacPherson/AP].

Here’s a story that has captured the imaginations of people of good conscience across the world.

One thing is certain – it isn’t over yet.

You might be wondering why it seems like dozens of your Facebook friends are suddenly converging on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation in North Dakota.

[More than] 1.6 million people [have] “checked in” via Facebook at the reservation in an act of solidarity with Standing Rock Sioux tribe members and other supporters who for months have been protesting the construction of an oil pipeline being built by Energy Transfer Partners to transport oil 1,200 miles east, from North Dakota’s Bakken field to a refinery in central Illinois.

The protesters, who include representatives of more than 200 other tribes, identify themselves as “water protectors” and contend that the pipeline would disturb sacred lands and burial grounds and would likely harm the Missouri River, which provides the tribe’s drinking water.

Early Monday, Facebook users began checking in at Standing Rock and reposting a message claiming that the check-ins were needed to help protect protesters in North Dakota from being monitored through the use of geotagging by law enforcement.

The Morton County Sheriff’s Office says the geotagging accusation is “absolutely false.” Leaders from the protest camp told Snopes they were not responsible for the social media plea and doubted its effectiveness against social media monitoring, though they appreciated the act of solidarity.

The protesters want to see construction of the pipeline halted entirely and its route changed. They point to a rising number of pipeline accidents in recent years as evidence that they are right to be concerned about the safety of their water source.

“These pipelines are often seeping or leaking in small places, and we don’t have any way to detect them,” Doug Hayes, a staff attorney at the Sierra Club, told The Huffington Post in September. “These are the types of concerns the tribes have, and they’re, frankly, very well-founded.”

Such concerns were part of the reason why the pipeline’s original route, which passed near Bismarck, the state’s capital, was abandoned.

The tribe and its supporters also believe they were not properly consulted concerning the project’s effect on sacred sites and burial grounds.

The protesters appear to be dedicated to continuing their demonstrations even as the weather gets colder. A tribal leader told the Guardian that the group is preparing for “the last stand.”

The pipeline developers are now awaiting a federal permit to dig under the river, a decision that could come any day now. President Barack Obama said in a Tuesday interview with NowThis that the Army Corps of Engineers is examining whether it can reroute the pipeline to address the concerns of the tribe and its supporters.

As the Seattle Times noted, if the pipeline is not completed and moving oil by Jan. 1, the developer’s contracts with shippers could expire.

Source: Here’s What You Should Know About The Dakota Pipeline Protest | The Huffington Post

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook