As the State of Minnesota prepares its Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Line 3 oil pipeline, the Minnesota Chippewa Tribe is preparing its own EIS. The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe is a federally recognized tribal government comprised of 6 Ojibwe/Chippewa Bands (Bois Forte, Fond du Lac, Grand Portage, Leech Lake, Mille Lacs, and White Earth) and their more than 42,000 members.
A tribal EIS is a very rare thing in the context of big infrastructure projects. This is a bold and courageous assertion of self-determination. The tribes are unified but need your support as they stand up to protect their landbase and the resources critical to the survival of the Anishinaabeg.
The purpose of the tribal EIS is to inform tribal decision-making about the project and address profound shortcomings in the range and depth of content in the State’s EIS, especially its assessment of environmental and cultural impacts specific to tribal communities. Throughout the State of Minnesota’s regulatory process for this pipeline, they have disregarded many tribal concerns, denied repeated requests for formal consultation, and denied the clear need for unique tribal knowledge and expertise.
The tribal EIS will be made available to the public and the process for its development will allow for public participation, including the incorporation of public comments on the draft version when developing the final version. The schedule for the writing of the EIS will loosely parallel the State of Minnesota’s schedule for its EIS – the study was scoped in November and December of 2016, a draft version will be made available in April 2017 and a final version expected in the fall of 2017. The tribal EIS will be rooted in Anishinaabe cultural values, focused on the preservation of the Anishinaabe way of life, and written by a professional and credible engineering firm with both scientific expertise and experience working with tribal communities and assessing impacts on tribal resources.
Honor the Earth has made a significant financial contribution to this project and is closely supporting the MCT in the development of this EIS. These are impoverished Nations with urgent social problems, and tribal governments have very limited capacity to take on new projects. They need our help and support. Please stand with us as we work to protect the water of the north and ensure our physical, economic, and cultural survival as Anishinaabeg.
Donate here to directly support the development of the tribal EIS. You can also send a check to Honor the Earth, PO Box 63, Callaway MN 56521, and add "Tribal EIS" in the memo line.