The Standing Rock and Cheyenne River Sioux tribes had asked the judge to temporarily stop pipeline construction, but the judge found their latest religious argument was brought up too late and likely wouldn't succeed.
On Tuesday U.S. District Court Judge James Boasberg rejected a request for an injunction from the two tribes, giving the go-ahead for the final stages of the pipeline. The tribes had protested that the construction by Dakota Pipelines would cause damage to the cultural sites of the tribes and also disturb their source of water as the pipelines are getting constructed in the north direction of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.
Chase Iron Eyes, lead counsel for the Lakota People's Law Project said "it is simply unacceptable that the government is allowing Energy Transfer Partners to build this pipeline through our sacred lands".
Oil could be moving through the pipeline from North Dakota to IL within weeks.
The protest comes after President Donald Trump signed an executive order reviving plans for the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.
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Members of the tribe and protesters sympathetic to them kicked off a four-day protest on Tuesday by setting up tepees on the lawn of the National Mall in Washington, DC.
This as hundreds rallied outside of the White House at the same time.
The tribes and a number of environmental groups oppose the pipeline under construction by Energy Transfer Partners, in part, because they say it could pose a threat to their drinking water supply.
Opponents of the Dakota Access pipeline have vowed to keep up protests against pipelines.
"The low point for me, was being shot with rubber bullets", recalled Standing Rock resident Robert Eder.
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The Standing Rock Sioux tribe has fought the pipeline project for years.
Compared to the largely white, upper-income residential populations of North Bismarck, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe remains the poorest community in the state, with unemployment rates that have hovered between 40 and 80 percent.
The company is finishing up construction under the Lake Oahe Missouri River reservoir in North Dakota - the last piece of work for the $3.8 billion pipeline to move North Dakota oil to a shipping point in IL. The company is in the process of completing the leg of the project that's around 100 feet below Lake Oahe. Company attorney William Scherman said in court documents that the pipeline could be moving oil as early as next week, and company spokeswoman Vicki Granado said it could be fully operational about three weeks later.
Opposition to the proposed Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) has been ongoing for almost a year.
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