Protesters plan to gather in downtown Seattle to raise their voices against the Dakota Access pipeline.
For months, the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in North Dakota has been protesting against a proposed oil
pipeline, arguing that a spill would permanently contaminate the reservation's water supply. Demonstrators across the nation have protested in solidarity
In Seattle on Friday, a few dozen protesters gathered in front of the Wells Fargo bank on 3rd Avenue downtown.
The rally is part of a national demonstration that says it wants to bring attention to Wells Fargo being one of the financial institutions funding the pipeline.
CNN reported earlier this month that Wells Fargo spokesman Alan Elias said the bank respects differing opinions on the project, but does business “only with companies that have demonstrated a strong, ongoing commitment to complying with all applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations.”
The head of the company that is building the Dakota Access oil pipeline said Friday that the pipeline won't be rerouted but that he'd like to meet with the head of an American Indian tribe to try to ease the tribe's concerns about the project.
Kelcy Warren, the CEO of Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners, told The Associated Press that the company has no alternative other than to stick to its plan for the $3.8 billion pipeline, which would ship oil from North Dakota to Illinois and which is nearly completed.
"There's not another way. We're building at that location," Warren said.
Warren said he would welcome the chance to meet with Dave Archambault, the chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux, to address the tribe's concerns that the pipeline, which skirts its reservation, would endanger drinking water and cultural sites.
The 1,200-mile pipeline, which spans four states, is largely complete except for a section that would pump oil under Lake Oahe, a Missouri River reservoir in southern North Dakota. The Standing Rock tribe fears that a leak could contaminate the drinking water on its nearby reservation and says the project also threatens sacred sites, a statement that Warren disputes.
Cox Media Group