The Dakota Access Pipeline is now in use after months of protests, lawsuits and clashes. Here's a look at the history of the 1,172-mile-long pipeline.
On June 1, 2017, the pipeline's developer, Energy Transfer Partners, announced the pipeline is now in full commercial use.
Multiple tents were set on fire at Standing Rock Feb. 22, the same day protesters were given a deadline to leave. Some have vowed to stay put.
The US Army Corps of Engineers will grant an easement in North Dakota for the controversial Dakota Access Pipeline, allowing the project to move toward completion despite the protests of Native Americans and environmentalists.
In January 2017, President Donald Trump signed executive actions to advance approval of this pipeline and others, casting aside efforts by President Barack Obama's administration to block construction. That order directed "the acting secretary of the Army to expeditiously review requests for approvals to construct and operate the Dakota Access Pipeline in compliance with the law."
Dakota Access is a $3.7 billion project that backers have touted as the safest and most efficient way to transport oil, rather than using rail or trucks. Its proponents also say the pipeline could help the US become less dependent on importing energy from foreign countries. The pipeline would bring an estimated $156 million in sales and income taxes to state and local governments as well as add 8,000 to 12,000 construction jobs.
The decision gives the pipeline's developer -- Dakota Access, a subsidiary of Energy Transfer Partners -- right-of-way through government land at Lake Oahe Dam and Reservoir in North Dakota. The tribe has been concerned that digging the pipeline under Lake Oahe -- a section of the Missouri River in North Dakota -- would affect the area's drinking water, as well as the supply for 17 million people living downstream.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had previously announced it would not build under Lake Oahe and that the pipeline would be rerouted.
Tribe members and allies, including environmental activists and military veterans, had gathered at Standing Rock reservation since April, where they established camp and refused to leave until construction was halted.
The protests were largely peaceful, but at times devolved into chaos as law enforcement officers fired rubber bullets, tear gas and water at some activists who set fires, vandalized construction equipment and blocked building efforts.
Rallying under the banner "water is life," the protesters charged that the oil pipeline threatened the tribe's water supply and desecrated sacred lands. Many feared a pipeline leak could cause an environmental disaster.
Actress Susan Sarandon is one of the celebrities who have offered their voice in protest of the Dakota Access pipeline.