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USA: In Victory for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Court Finds That Approval of Dakota Access Pipeline Violated the Law.

Sunday 22 October 2017, by siawi3

Source: https://www.theindigenousamericans.com/2017/10/17/victory-standing-rock-sioux-tribe-court-finds-approval-dakota-access-pipeline-violated-law-2/

A Victory for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe

By theindigenousamericans_6i2sru

On October 17, 2017October 20, 2017

In Victory for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Court Finds That Approval of Dakota Access Pipeline Violated the Law.

The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe won a significant victory today in its fight to protect the Tribe’s drinking water and ancestral lands from the Dakota Access pipeline.

A federal judge ruled that the federal permits authorizing the pipeline to cross the Missouri River just upstream of the Standing Rock reservation, which were hastily issued by the Trump administration just days after the inauguration, violated the law in certain critical respects.

In a 91-page decision, Judge James Boasberg wrote, “the Court agrees that [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.”

The Court did not determine whether pipeline operations should be shut off and has requested additional briefing on the subject and a status conference next week.

“This is a major victory for the Tribe and we commend the courts for upholding the law and doing the right thing,” said Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault II in a recent statement. “The previous administration painstakingly considered the impacts of this pipeline, and President Trump hastily dismissed these careful environmental considerations in favor of political and personal interests.

We applaud the courts for protecting our laws and regulations from undue political influence and will ask the Court to shut down pipeline operations immediately.”

The Tribe’s inspiring and courageous fight has attracted international attention and drawn the support of hundreds of tribes around the nation.

The Tribe is represented by the nonprofit environmental law firm Earthjustice, which filed a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for issuing a permit for the pipeline construction in violation of several environmental laws.

“This decision marks an important turning point. Until now, the rights of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe have been disregarded by the builders of the Dakota Access Pipeline and the Trump administration—prompting a well-deserved global outcry,” said Earthjustice attorney Jan Hasselman. “The federal courts have stepped in where our political systems have failed to protect the rights of Native communities.”

The Court ruled against the Tribe on several other issues, finding that the reversal allowing the pipeline complied with the law in some respects.

The $3.8 billion pipeline project, also known as Bakken Oil Pipeline, extends 1,168 miles across North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, and Illinois, crossing through communities, farms, tribal land, sensitive natural areas and wildlife habitat. The pipeline would carry up to 570,000 barrels a day of crude oil from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota to Illinois where it links with another pipeline that will transport the oil to terminals and refineries along the Gulf of Mexico.

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Source: https://www.theindigenousamericans.com/2017/10/21/federal-judge-rules-favor-american-indian-plaintiffs-natural-gas-line-ordered-removed-land/

Judge orders removal of gas pipeline on Native American land in Oklahoma

By theindigenousamericans_6i2sru

On October 21, 2017October 21, 2017

In a major victory for American Indian land rights, a federal judge on Tuesday, ordered Enable Midstream Partners and its affiliates to remove a natural gas pipeline from 38 American Indian land owners’ property near Anadarko, Oklahoma. A tract of the land is part of the Kiowa Tribes of Oklahoma.

The Order was entered today in the Davilla v. Enable Midstream Partners, L.P., et al., Case No. CIV-15-1262-M (Western District of Oklahoma) case. The 38 Native American land owners are represented by attorneys David C. Smith, Dustin T. Greene, and Catherine F. Munson of Kilpatrick Townsend.

Plaintiffs are enrolled members of the Comanche, Caddo, Apache, Cherokee, and Kiowa Tribes of Oklahoma.

Between 1980 and 2000, Enable operated the pipeline on Plaintiffs’ land pursuant to an easement granted to it by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (“BIA”). The Court found that Enable’s easement expired in 2000, yet Enable continued operate the pipeline without an easement, putting it in trespass and leading to the filing of Plaintiffs’ lawsuit.

On Plaintiffs’ Motion for Partial Summary Judgment and for a Permanent Injunction, the Court found that “plaintiffs have objected to the renewal of the easement and defendants’ continued use of the pipeline from the time defendants first sought the renewal of the easement,” and that Enable and its predecessor, Enogex, had failed to comply with any of the federal statutes under which they could have secured a valid easement.

The Court also noted that “on March 23, 2010, more than five and a half years before the instant action was filed” the BIA instructed Enogex that “[i]f valid approval of a right of way for this tract is not timely secured, Enogex should be directed to move the pipeline off the subject property.” Yet, “defendants have done nothing to move the pipeline off the tract ….”

With the entry of this Order, the only issue that remains in the case is damages for Enable’s trespass since 2000. This decision marks a significant victory for Native American land rights.

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Source: https://www.theindigenousamericans.com/2017/10/21/frances-largest-bank-stops-funding-fracking-oil-indigenous-lands/

France’s largest bank stops funding fracking and oil on Indigenous lands

By theindigenousamericans_6i2sru

On October 21, 2017October 21, 2017

On October 11, BNP Paribas, the 2nd largest bank in France and 4th largest corporate lender to Enbridge LLC, announced it will cease all funding of companies whose primary business is tar sands, fracking, or Arctic drilling.

The news comes on the tail of several other banks divesting from the project level financing of Energy Transfer Partnership, the company behind the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline.

Since last fall, several delegations of indigenous peoples have brought the stories of human rights abuses that occurred during the resistance at Standing Rock at the hands of ETP to the financial industry. Unarmed men, women, and children were attacked with dogs wielded by unlicensed Dakota Access private security, and a series of leaked reports has revealed a far-ranging counterintelligence operation designed to suppress, infiltrate, and demonize demonstrators exercising their first amendment rights.

A groundswell of resistance continues in Minnesota, as does worldwide focus on divestment. On October 23-25, an indigenous-led global day of action will take place in tandem with the meeting of 95 banks in Sao Paulo, Brazil, to vote on a policy that upholds indigenous peoples rights to Free, Prior, and Informed Consent. In Minnesota, all 5 impacted tribes along the impacted route have not given consent and have formally intervened into the regulatory process , and recently announced their own environmental review process for Line 3, the Anishinaabe Cumulative Impact Assessement.

BNP Paribas takes further measures to accelerate its support of the energy transition

The BNP Paribas Group will no longer do business with companies whose principal business activity is the exploration, production, distribution, marketing or trading of oil and gas from shale and/or oil from tar sands.

BNP Paribas is also ceasing financing of projects that are primarily involved in the transportation or export of oil and gas from shale or oil from tar sands.

The Group will not finance any oil or gas exploration or production projects in the Arctic region.

BNP Paribas will continue to actively support clients in the energy sector who are committed to being part of the energy transition.

These new measures complement the Group’s previous decisions to reduce its support for coal mines and coal-fired power generation, to increase its total financing for renewable energy to €15 billion by 2020, and to set aside €100 million for investment in start-ups working on innovative solutions for energy transition.

Source: BNP