FEATURING MATT REMLE (HUNKPAPA LAKOTA) – The Army Corps of Engineers has given its approval for the highly controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, only months after refusing to grant the permit. The Army approved a 30-year easement for a section of disputed land. Donald Trump, who has a personal stake in the project, had vowed to push the pipeline through despite widespread public opposition, including from the Standing Rock Sioux tribe whose land and water safety would be jeopardized in the event of a spill or leak.
On the same day that the news of the decision came, water protectors declared a major victory when the City Council of Seattle, Washington, unanimously voted to divest its $3 billion in business from Wells Fargo, over that bank’s funding of the Dakota Access Pipeline. The activists #DefundDAPL now hope to replicate the move elsewhere and kill the project entirely by pressuring banks to pull funding.
Matt Remle (Hunkpapa Lakota), works for the Office of Indian Education in the Marysville/Tulalip school district in Seattle, Washington. He is a writer and editor for Last Real Indians and runs an on-line Lakota language program. He is the author of Seattle’s Indigenous Peoples’ Day resolution, as well as, Seattle’s resolutions calling on Congress to engage in reconciliation with Tribe’s over the Boarding School Era policies and to oppose the construction of the Dakota Access pipeline. In 2014, he was awarded Seattle’s Individual Human Rights Leader award.