A federal appeals court said the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline can continue to operate during legal arguments.
The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia set aside a lower court’s order on Tuesday and granted owner Energy Transfer LP an administrative stay until next Thursday so it can file briefs.
“The purpose of this administrative stay is to give the court sufficient opportunity to consider the emergency motion for stay and should not be construed in any way as a ruling on the merits of that motion,” the court said.
The pipeline, which carries oil from North Dakota across four states to Illinois, is opposed by environmental activists and local tribes along the route.
A federal district judge last week ordered the line shut down until a thorough environmental impact review is completed.
The judge said Energy Transfer should not have been allowed to build a portion of the pipeline under South Dakota’s Lake Oahe, a drinking water source for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe.
With Post wires
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