A new lawsuit filed Monday by construction contractors seeking to block construction of the Dakota Access pipeline has prompted a new round of questions over who is at fault for what, and what the company stands to gain.
Key Takeaways: The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., alleges that the pipeline’s construction was in violation of the Clean Water Act and that it violates the U.N. Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which calls on governments to take measures to protect Indigenous peoples’ rights.
The lawsuit also argues that the Obama administration failed to adequately respond to complaints from Native American tribes, and that the Army Corps of Engineers ignored environmental concerns about the project and ignored other violations of the law.
The lawsuit names as defendants the Army, the Department of the Interior, and the Department for the Environment and Natural Resources.
It seeks a preliminary injunction blocking the pipeline, which would allow it to proceed and would block the construction of its 1,172-mile segment.
The White House, meanwhile, has been fighting to block the project.
On Monday, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that the administration will not tolerate the construction and use of fossil fuels and said the pipeline poses “an urgent threat to the health and safety of Americans.”
“The Administration has repeatedly called on the federal government to immediately halt the construction, and to take immediate steps to ensure the safety and security of all Americans,” Sanders said.