Dakota Pipeline knew about Standing Rock concerns 2 1/2 years ago

Here is the audio recording of Energy Transfers Partner’s (ETP) meeting with the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe (SRST) on September 30, 2014.

The recording is astounding for its replication of current arguments.  The SRST clearly states their primary concerns are historical and sacred sites, as well as water quality and the risk of spills.  This is exactly what they are saying today.  The meeting was a first step in a consultation process that never happened.

Two more issues come up early in the meeting:  1) The absence of the Army Corp at the meeting and SRST’s clear dissatisfaction with the Army Corp’s coordination with the tribe when granting permits; and 2) Dakota Access’s apparent strategy to avoid an Environmental Impact Statement by subdividing the pipeline into numerous mini-projects, none of which alone require extensive review.  In this meeting, SRST provides court precedents that consider this approach a violation of the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA).

war-zone-3

Two years after this meeting, the unaddressed issues led to the current conflict.

Since this 2014 meeting, ETP has made no reference to it and has implied that the SRST failed to discuss the pipeline with them.  It’s quite clear from this recording that SRST was very honest and forthright about their concerns (perhaps too much too early) and that ETP apparently decided it would be easier to ignore the tribe than to try to work with them.  There were clear opportunities for future communication, and clear warning signs of future conflict, and ETP ignored both.

This will no doubt become a textbook example violation of the federal mandate to consult with tribes and a worse-case scenario of what happens when you don’t.

Here are some choice quotes (with times in the recording):

28:05 – “For us to officially endorse or accept a proposal that would negatively impact our cultural sites, our prayer sites, our duties and responsibilities as stewards of the land, would be unacceptable… The risks are too great for our children.” – Waste’Win Young

44:10 – “We will re-rout as necessary for threatened and endangered species and cultural resources.” – Chuck Frey, Energy Transfer Partners

1:00:45 – “Do not underestimate the people of Standing Rock… we know what we have to keep for our children and grandchildren… Our water is our single last property that we have for our people and water is life. Mni wiconi. You as a human being cannot drink oil. We need the water to survive… We will do whatever we have to do to stop this pipeline… We know all the tricks of the wasichu language… I will never submit to any pipeline to come through my land.” – Councilwoman Phyllis Young

Rough guideline to the recording:
0:00-4:00 – introductions
4:00-18:00 – ETP presentation
18:00- – SRST officers (Waste’Win Young) raise legal and permit issues
20:00 – says comprehensive NEPA review cannot be avoided by segmenting the pipeline into numerous “small” projects.
21:00 – says Army Corp must rule on entire pipeline (Army Corp not present at the meeting).
23:00 – says SRST having difficult time with Army Corp when it comes to tribal consultation and permitting
27:00 – discusses Whitestone Massacre
28:05 – “For us to officially endorse or accept a proposal that would negatively impact our cultural sites, our prayer sites, our duties and responsibilities as stewards of the land, would be unacceptable… The risks are too great for our children.” – Waste’Win Young
29:00 – more questions from the SRST (Terry Clouthier)
32:00 – discussing absence of Army Corp at meeting
33:00 – discussing line can be expanded to 570 bpd with a “drag reducing agent”; current contracts are for 320 bpd.
36:00 – discussing the 40 permanent jobs to be created by the pipeline
37:50 – discussing routing options and the pre-existing Northern natural gas pipeline that follows a similar route (built in 1989)
38:30 – discussing tribal participation during cultural surveys and sensitive sites
39:30 – ETP asks for a map of sensitive sites; Clouthier says this information is not publicly available; will discuss privately as needed (Note that on Sept 3, 2016, ETP obtained lat-longs of sacred sites and deliberately destroyed them.)
41:00 – discussing eminent domain on private lands
42:00 – discussing potential to export this oil
44:00 – discussing re-routing options
44:10 – “We will re-rout as necessary for threatened and endangered species and cultural resources.” – ETP rep — seems to go on to imply they will get their information on sensitive sites from federal databases and not directly from the SRST; 45:00 SRST counters that only they have the information for some key cultural sites. ETP says they will take it into consideration.
46:50 – SRST clarifies that tribes had no right of consultation for the natural gas pipeline in 1989; that law came in 1992.
47:30 – SRST describe sacred sites in the vicinity of the pipeline and emphasize importance of future communication with SRST.
49:45 – Questions from councilmembers (mostly Councilwoman Phyllis Young)
52:00 – more emphasis on oral history and need to consult with SRST regarding cultural sites
53:00 – discussion of SRST Water Control Board and contamination fears of water supply
54:00 – SRST has already passed a resolution opposing pipelines
58:30 – discussion of flooding by Army Corp dam when they dammed the river and created Lake Oahe in 1960, in which families had to flee in the middle of winter
1:00:45 – “Do not underestimate the people of Standing Rock… and we know what we have to keep for our children and grandchildren… Our water is our single last property that we have for our people and water is life. Mni wiconi. You as a human being cannot drink oil. We need the water to survive… We will do whatever we have to do to stop this pipeline… We know all the tricks of the wasichu language… I will never submit to any pipeline to come through my land.” – Councilwoman Phyllis Young
1:01:30 – SRST notes that all Army Corp land is actually the tribe’s.
1:02:00 – Notes that Army Corp still owes SRST compensation for flooding caused by the dam.
1:03:30 – Notes that SRST sued the Keystone Pipeline a few years ago.
1:04:00 – Notes treaty history.
1:06:30 – Comment to run pipeline near Bismarck instead.
1:07:00 – SRST Chairman David Archambault says the proposed pipeline route is “too close” and reiterates concerns regarding sacred sites and threat to water quality.
1:08:00 – Meeting adjourns.

Previous posts about Standing Rock:

war-zone-map-zoom

Advertisements
This entry was posted in news, Standing Rock and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s