Posted by on Apr 26, 2016 in Featured

Protecting Water from Big Oil by Matt Remle

Protecting Water from Big Oil by Matt Remle

On April 24th, runners set forth from Cannonball, ND, on the Standing Rock Sioux tribe reservation, to embark on a 500-mile relay run to deliver a message to the Army Corp of Engineers that they “resist the construction of a pipeline from crossing beneath sacred water needed for life.”

Opposition against the proposed Dakota Access pipeline, also known as the Bakken pipeline, has spread significantly after the pipeline backer, Texas based Energy Transfer, received its permit for construction approved in Iowa in early March, despite fierce opposition from Iowa farmers and land owners.   Energy Transfer had previously had its permits for construction approved by the states of North Dakota, South Dakota and Illinois, the other states the pipeline will cross, despite opposition from the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and others.

The Dakota Access Pipeline, if built, would carry Bakken crude oil from Northwestern North Dakota to distribution hub in Illinois where it would be routed to the gulf coast for export.

Far from being a jobs creator, Energy Transfer’s own informational material states that the Dakota Access pipeline would generate several thousand jobs during the construction phase and only 40-50 permanent jobs.  Additionally, the proposed route of the Dakota Access Pipeline crosses the Missouri River, source of drinking water for thousands, twice and would desecrate burial sites and areas of cultural and historical significance to North Plains tribes and to the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in particular.

In response to the permit approvals, numerous actions have transpired dedicated to stopping the pipeline from being constructed.

On March 25th, the Wakpala community on the Standing Rock Sioux reservation gathered for the ‘Run for Water‘ to draw attention to the sacredness of water and to the threat posed to the Missouri River by the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline.  The run was organized by Bobbi Three Legs.

Participants in the ‘Run for Water’. Photo provided by Waniya Locke

Participants in the ‘Run for Water’. Photo provided by Waniya Locke

On April 1st, riders on horseback gathered in Ft. Yates, ND on the Standing Rock reservation before setting out for Cannonball where a Spirit Camp has been established along the proposed route of the Dakota Access pipeline.  People have committed to staying at the Spirit Camp to stop the pipelines construction.

Riders set out for the Spirit Camp. 4/1/16

Riders set out for the Spirit Camp. 4/1/16

Now runners have committed themselves to a ‘Run for your life‘ relay that will take runners over 500-miles from Cannonball, ND to the offices of the Army Corps of Engineers in Omaha, NE.  The week long relay that started on April 24th will bring Dakota Access pipeline opponents to the permitting agencies office to tell them to reject Energy Transfers permit to build the pipeline.

Run for Life: No Dakota Access Pipeline

*Cover photo by Cheryl Angel Runners (John, Joe Eagleman Sicangu, Lance Dorian Sicangu.)

by Wakíƞyaƞ Waánataƞ (Matt Remle)

Matt Remle (Lakota) is an editor and writer for Last Real Indians and LRInspire. @wakiyan7

Matt Remle (Lakota) is an editor and writer for Last Real Indians and LRInspire. @wakiyan7