March 4, 2017 5 Comments
The U.S. Army Corps will spend more than $1 million to clean up the mess left behind by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and others opposed to the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota. The protesters — who succeeded in temporarily shutting down pipeline construction under orders from President Barack Obama — were evicted after President Donald Trump put the pipeline project back online.
“The corps’ contract with a Florida-based company to provide trash removal and environmental cleanup includes the main Oceti Sakowin camp on the north side of the Cannonball River and the smaller Rosebud camp on the south side,” the Bismarck Tribune reported on Friday. “Both are on corps’-owned property.”
Despite efforts by the tribe to clean up the protest sites, the land was littered with garbage, and even cars and motor homes had to be removed.
“About 240 rollout dumpsters have been hauled out, each brimming with debris of old food stores, structures, tents, building materials and personal belongings, much of it buried under winter blizzards or simply left behind,” the Tribune reported. “Officials are estimating it will require another equal number of loads to get the job done.”
The article said special consideration would be given to some items, such as teepees, that could have cultural significance and toxic materials.
Logan Thompson, owner of Prairie View equipment contractor, said his company got instructions on handling human waste and waste compost from health officials.
In January, Stand Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II spoke out about the clean up after the protest, which was staged because the tribe and others believed a pipeline spill could contaminate the Missouri River and a reservoir, the Tribune reported.
“Because of this risk of flood, we’re worried about what’s going to be left at the camp,” Archambault said. “What we want to do is make sure none of that waste gets into the Missouri River .… We’re water protectors, but we’re the ones that are going to start contaminating the water.”
And that’s the thing, the grasslands in Dakota are a fragile ecosystem. That’s why the ranchers are careful in their stewardship of the land, and it’s why the Theodore Roosevelt National Park was founded. This part of the country is where TR became the TR that we all love, as he enjoyed ‘the Strenuous Life’. It made quite the change in a sickly young man. For me it’s personal, it’s also where I restarted my life, when I moved west.
I love that country, its sparseness, its beauty, its open spaces, and yes, its people, both Sioux and Caucasian. As good as any I’ve met. To have this holocaust visited on them by the wastrels of the left, protesting thing they don’t understand, makes me heartsick. To see the wreckage they left behind in this beautiful land, enrages me beyond measure.
I don’t have the answer, I guess, as to what should be done (it must be cleaned up though, and quickly, the spring thaw is coming). But a good start would be making these fools clean up after themselves, their mom’s must be really proud of them.
It’s heartbreaking to see land so abused, and for no real purpose.