(AP) — A federal judge won’t keep the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from launching a full environmental study of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline’s disputed crossing of a Missouri River reservoir in North Dakota.
On Wednesday, U.S. District Judge James Boasberg didn’t grant a request of Texas-based Energy Transfer Partners.
ETP wanted to stop the Corps’ study from proceeding until the judge rules on whether the company already has the necessary permission to lay pipe under Lake Oahe. That’s the North Dakota reservoir that’s the water source for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe.
The tribe worries a pipeline leak would contaminate its drinking water. ETP says the pipeline is safe.
The Corps disputes permission has been granted, and says further study is needed.
A full environmental study can take up to two years to complete. It also can be called off at any time.