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US Army Plans Dakota Access Pipeline Environmental Study

The US Army is preparing to conduct a study of the potential environmental ramifications related to the Dakota Access pipeline, the department said in a public notice published in the US federal register on Wednesday.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Interested parties, the notice pointed out, should identify concerns and alternatives that should be considered in EIS, including alternative locations for the pipeline, potential risks of an oil spill, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s water intakes and the Tribe’s hunting rights.

“The Department of the Army (Army), as lead agency, is gathering information necessary to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) in connection with Dakota Access, LLC's request to grant an easement to cross Lake Oahe, which is on the Missouri River and owned by the US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps),” the notice stated.

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Members of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, whose reservation is near part of the pipeline route, claim the pipeline would affect their water sources and violate sacred land.

The nearly 1,200-mile pipeline is intended to transport domestically produced light crude oil from North Dakota through the states of South Dakota and Iowa into Illinois. Last month, the Army Corps decided to halt final-stage construction of the pipeline because of environmental concerns.

The project has sparked protests with violent clashes involving local law enforcement officials, who have used dogs, water cannons, tear gas and physical violence in unsuccessful attempts to end the standoff.

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