Even though they are camped on private land guaranteed to the tribe in an 1851 treaty with the federal government, the ND governor is ordering them to evacuate “for their own safety.”
President Trump recently ordered the Army Corps of Engineers to issue the final permit for the pipeline even though the environmental impact study was never completed.
ABC News reported that North Dakota governor Doug Burgum issued an emergency evacuation order Wednesday for the Oceti Sakowin protest camp — located on the edge of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation — where Dakota Access Pipeline opponents have spent several months expressing their disdain for the pipeline.
Gov. Burgum claimed to issue the order “out of concern for the safety of people who are residing on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) land in southern Morton County and to avoid an ecological disaster to the Missouri River,” read a statement from the governor’s office.
— Doug Burgum (@DougBurgum) February 16, 2017
The increasing temperatures were used an an excuse for issuing the order, because Burgum does not think the people who have lived in the area their entire lives are able to decide whether or not it is safe. He also believes it will be an ecological disaster if the camp is washed downstream, but it will somehow not be an ecological disaster when the oil spills into the river.
“Warm temperatures have accelerated snowmelt in the area of the Oceti Sakowin protest camp, and the National Weather Service reports that the Cannonball River should be on the watch for rising water levels and an increased risk of ice jams later this week,” the statement read. “Due to these conditions, the governor’s emergency order addresses safety concerns to human life as anyone in the floodplain is at risk for possible injury or death. The order also addresses the need to protect the Missouri River from the waste that will flow into the Cannonball River and Lake Oahe if the camp is not cleared and the cleanup expedited.”
Even though the Standing Rock Sioux began coordinating a cleanup of the site in late January, state officials say they are too slow with the progress.
On Feb. 3, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers ordered them to vacate to prevent injuries and significant environmental damage in the likely event of flooding in the area.
In a ridiculous statement, the governor’s office said the Oceti Sakowin camp needs to be evacuated no later than Feb. 22 in order to allow private contractors to accelerate the removal of waste from the camp.
They are still pretending the evacuation is for the safety of the people, just like the ordered evacuations during the winter were for the safety of the campers. Well, they didn’t leave, and they didn’t die or get hurt except the ones that were injured in the assaults by police. The people there should be allowed to make their own decisions on when to leave, it should not be a decision left to the governor if it is about their safety.
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)