Energy

Failing Anti-Fracking Movement Piggybacks On Anti-DAPL Protests

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Chris White Tech Reporter
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Anti-fracking activists are riding the coattails of the Dakota pipeline protests in a desperate effort to resuscitate the failing anti-fracking movement.

Anti-fossil fuel activists are working overtime to conceal a never-fracking fight against the planned fracking project at Wayne National Forest in Ohio within the current fight against the hotly contested Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota.

“It started with the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL),” Nathaniel McCarthy, an activist with anti-fracking group SprouTogether, wrote in a letter posted on Change.Org, a website used to raise money for issued-oriented campaigns.

He added: “We have proven that through peaceful protest, we can fight back against fracking, which can destroy wildlife, poison water sources, and even push forward climate change.”

The Stop Fracking Ohio Facebook page even sent out a clarion call to its minions in November, calling on its anti-DAPL followers and “Native-American tribes” to descend on Wayne National Forest in December.

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) consulted with the Ohio State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and various American Indian tribes before approving the Wayne National Forest project in October.

The SHPO never groused, complained or made any attempt to oppose the fracking project at the park, according to the BLM’s Environmental Assessment.

“[T]he BLM sent certified letters to seven federally recognized tribes who have a known connection to the area notifying them of the Proposed Action and asking to identify any concerns with respect to the Proposed Action,” the BLM report noted. “To date, the BLM has received no responses to these letters.”

The DAPL pipeline, which is slated to shuttle more than 500,000 barrels of Bakken oil from North Dakota to Illinois, came under similar scrutiny in 2014, when its developers haggled with the government and Standing Rock Sioux over the terms of the pipeline.

Environmentalists rallied to the tribe’s side, and both sides argue that the DAPL’s construction would trample on ancient American Indian burial grounds, as well as poison Standing Rock’s drinking water.

The Army Corps of Engineers attempted more than a dozen times between 2014 and 2016 to discuss the line’s route with the Standing Rock.

The tribe either failed to respond to requests for consultation or were slow to cooperate during the process, even after continued badgering from the Corps, according to court documents.

Standing Rock Sioux did not participate in the nearly 30 hours of meetings held to determine the pipeline’s southern route, says to Julie Fedorchak, who serves as the chairman of the North Dakota Public Service Utility Services.

The anti-fossil fuel movement is facing numerous defeats, including the proposed measures rejected during the 2016 election in Colorado. Consequently, activists have an incentive to tie their hopes to the more popular anti-DAPL movement.

Colorado voters approved an amendment Nov. 8 aimed at making it more difficult for environmentalists to ban fracking in the state.

The measure requires a proposed amendment to garner voter signatures in all 35 state senate districts before it can be passed into law; more than 50 percent of voters must approve future amendments.

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