Indigenous people, climate activists and landowners have been protesting the construction of a 1,200 mile oil pipeline crossing North Dakota. A historical burial ground would be demolished during construction. The protesters also worry about the environmental and water supply damages that could occur if the pipeline were to break. On the contrary, this pipeline would carry 470,000 barrels of oil a day, would pump millions of dollars into local economies and create jobs. Have the indigenous people’s rights been threatened? Do the pros of the pipeline outweigh the cons?
“I definitely support the indigenous people and their rights to their land and their burial grounds. Just the plans in general to have this is dangerous. We’ve had so many accidents before and i think we could invest more in renewable resources than in natural gas. We should focus more on renewable resources rather than natural gas which is dwindling already. The earth cant replenish it as fast as we are taking it.”
“Their rights are being taken advantage of. I would come from it at an environmentalist perspective. It is going to destroy different things so I think that would, in my opinion, outweigh any pros. And the fact that it going to mess with the burial ground, I feel like that’s where we should draw line. I’m not in government so I cant deal with that.”
“I would say in order for me to state my opinion I would need to be further educated on the situation. I know today I toured Colonial Oil and one of our conversations was the colonial pipeline and we got to learn a lot about the economic factors that went along with that. So my answer for you is that if anyone wants to state their opinion without asking for the facts and wanting to be well rounded, they probably shouldn’t do that.
I think in general our knowledge when it comes to this group of people is very limited and we often forget to consider them. I think it’s a shame we don’t listen more to their beliefs and I feel ashamed I can’t form an opinion because I don’t know how important those things are to them.”
“Theres pros and cons to everything. Now, I would have to say that the burial ground is a major con, obviously, because that has… historically, morally people would be against that. I would say move it passed the burial ground. I would try to find away around the burial ground. I guess I would agree with the protestors. People are looking for ways to get oil more oil but maybe there could be a solution on the outskirts.”