Federal lawyers said Friday that the government’s court-ordered environmental review of the Dakota Access pipeline will be complete by next spring, not this year, as previously expected.
In a court filing, the Army Corps of Engineers said it was pushing back its review schedule while it waits for new oil spill modeling from the developers of Dakota Access.
“The Corps’ original estimate that its review and analysis of the remand issues would conclude between late November and early December 2017 was based in part upon the Corps’ understanding that it would take Dakota Access approximately thirty days to provide the requested information,” lawyers wrote in their filing.
“Given the current expected time frame for the receipt of additional information, the Corps now anticipates that its review and analysis of the remand issues will not conclude until approximately April 2, 2018. The Corps is actively working on ways to shorten this timeline,” they wrote.
District Court Judge James Boasberg, in June, ordered the Army Corps to conduct a more thorough environmental review of the Dakota Access pipeline after tribes said the project’s route through North Dakota posed environmental and cultural threats.
The pipeline is operational and oil is flowing through it, and Boasberg is currently considering whether to shut it down during the Army Corps’ new review.