Dakota Access pipeline expected to begin shipping Thursday

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline is officially in service.

The second pipeline is the 700 mile ETCO or Energy Transfer Crude Oil Pipeline that will transport oil from the Patoka Tank Farm to Nederland, Texas where the crude oil can be refined or further transported to additional refining markets. Law enforcement and pipeline developer Energy Transfer Partners say safety was the top priority.

The controversial Dakota Access pipeline has started carrying oil between North Dakota and IL, its owner said Thursday.

The 700-mile and 30-inch ETCO pipeline on the other hand is a natural gas pipeline from Patoka in IL to Nederland in Texas where the crude oil is refined or further transported to more refining markets.

"People are coming out against dirty fossil fuel infrastructure projects that would lock us into carbon producing fossil fuels potentially for decades", said Cathy Collentine with the Sierra Club, which was involved in the Dakota Access Pipeline protests. The Standing Rock Sioux, who tap the Missouri River for tribal water, argued that the pipeline traversed sacred burial grounds and threatened the tribe's main water source.

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The project caught worldwide attention in the latter half of 2016 due to large protests against it by American Indian and environmental activists at a spot near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation and the North Dakota lake. The so-called DAPL, which was completed in early May, faced eco-terrorist actions earlier this year.

"The combined system has a total capacity of up to approximately 570,000 b/d, and it can be expanded to this", the spokesperson said.

President Donald Trump approved the grant after taking office.

Standing Rock Tribe chairman Dave Archambault II said in a statement Thursday, "We will continue to battle the operation of this pipeline in court and remind everyone that just because the oil is flowing now doesn't mean that it can't be stopped".