Trump resumes pipelines at great risk to environmentOpinion

This map shows pipeline spills during the last five years.

This map shows pipeline spills during the last five years.

By Dakota Cantwell

Just a short time into the Trump presidency and the the Earth is already in large amounts of peril.  The EPA is under a gag order and Exxonmobil’s former CEO, Rex Tillerson, is being considered for Secretary of State.

These two are rough enough for any environmentalist to swallow, but Trump wasn’t done fighting to destroy the earth.  

In a long line of executive orders being handed out, Trump has seen fit to restart construction on the Dakota Pipeline.  A pipeline that was closed pending investigation by the Army Corps of Engineers in December.  

In case anyone has forgotten, the Dakota Pipeline is an attempt by Energy Transfer Partners (ETP) to build a pipeline connecting North Dakota to a refinery in Illinois.  

According to BBC News, ETP claims that “the pipeline would provide a more cost effective, efficient means of transporting crude, rather shipping barrels by train.”

According to the Washington Post “the executive order directs the Army Corps of Engineers to review and approve in an expedited manner, to the extent permitted by law.”

Trump argues his reasoning behind continuing construction is to bring back jobs to America, however the President may face more than the usual backlash because of this decision.

“The new president may face questions about his personal interest in the Dakota project as ETP chief executive Kelly Warren donated $100,000 to his election campaign” according to BBC News.  

Despite the obvious conflict of interest, other issues with the pipeline still remain.  

The pipeline presents a drastic threat to the climate of the earth.

Shortly before Obama became involved with the halting of the pipeline, the State Department released a statement about the pipelines dangers.  They said that energy it takes to extract thick crude makes the project greenhouse gas intensive.  

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe’s main source of water also remains imperil.  Not to mention everyone down the Missouri River.

Despite ETP’s continued efforts to ensure those opposed to the pipeline that every effort is being made to prevent a spill, it is a big concern.

According to EcoWatch, there were 220 significant incidents in 2016 involving pipelines; including the S-1 pipeline in Oklahoma, the Sunoco Logistics pipeline in Pennsylvania and the Colonial pipeline in Alabama.  

Trump continues to claim that his desire to restart the pipeline is to bring jobs back to the American people.  A good goal, and one that much of his campaign was based upon.

Unfortunately for Trump and his worshipers, this pipeline is not the goldmine that they make it out to be.

If you are interested in assisting in the fight against the Dakota pipeline, here are a few steps you can take to make a difference.


  • Sign the petition at to ask the Army Corps of Engineers to continue to deny the pipeline permission to complete building.
  • Voice your opinion to North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple at 701-328-2200. As always be respectful about opposition so as to add to the resistance and not harm the work being done to oppose the pipeline.
  • Donate to the protesting camps.  The Sacred Stone camp has a well upkept website with information about the needs of those camping out during the winter.
  • Most importantly, stay informed and keep others informed.  The best weapon for those working for the pipeline is ignorance about the subject.  Stay informed and stay strong.


Fortunately those concerned about the completion of this pipeline are still in a position to take a stand against it.  At least for the moment, we are only a week into the new presidency.


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