Tuesday, April 25, 2017

North Dakota will check pipeline protest area for invasive species from out-of-state firewood

Protest camp near Cannon Ball, N.D. (AP photo)
North Dakota's agriculture commissioner said firewood donated from across the country to Dakota Access Pipeline protesters could have been a pathway for invasive species to enter the state, reports The Associated Press. "State and federal officials will be monitoring and surveying the camp areas and disposal sites this summer for pests such as emerald ash borer, gypsy moths and bark beetles."

In February a federal district court judge denied a temporary restraining order sought by the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe "to stop drilling of the Dakota Access Pipeline across the Missouri River/Lake Oahe," Lauren Donovan reported for The Bismarck Tribune. The tribe said the pipeline "would interfere with its indigenous freedom to practice religion in pure, clean water."

AP notes that Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said after the camps "were closed and cleaned up in February, crews hauled firewood to a landfill to eliminate the risk of any pests spreading."

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