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After months of protest-driven delays, the Dakota Access pipeline now is running ahead of schedule and expected to be ready to deliver oil as early as next month.
Previous efforts by the Standing Rock Sioux to block the project in court have failed.
“Dakota Access reports that the pilot hole is complete,” said the report, filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court.
In his Sept. 9 ruling, Judge Boasberg said the tribe rejected or ignored repeated requests to meet with the corps on the pipeline.
Energy Transfer Partners has argued that the Obama administration delayed the project for political reasons even though the pipeline cleared all necessary permitting hurdles, including environmental reviews.
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No immediate ruling made on Dakota Access pipeline work
Earlier this month, Boasberg declined the tribes’ request to order an immediate halt to the pipeline construction, ruling that as long as oil wasn’t flowing through the pipeline, there was no imminent harm to the tribes.
Boasberg asked Ducheneaux how there could be a contamination issue if “the pipeline itself doesn’t even touch the water.”
U.S. District Judge James Boasberg told lawyers at a hearing that he wants to issue a ruling before oil begins flowing in the pipeline, which could be weeks away.
A federal judge said Tuesday that he’ll decide within a week whether to temporarily halt construction of the final section of the Dakota Access pipeline over claims that it violates the religious rights of two Indian tribes.
When they filed the lawsuit last summer, the tribes argued that the pipeline threatens Native American cultural sites and their water supply.