$3.8 billion Dakota Access oil pipeline begins service

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The oil will flow from the Bakken/Three Forks production areas in North Dakota to a storage and terminal hub outside Patoka, IL and/or down to additional terminals in Nederland, TX, the firm said.

The developer of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, which is expected to begin shipping oil on Thursday, will face scrutiny later this summer on whether it violated North Dakota rules during construction.

The Bakken Pipeline is a joint venture between Energy Transfer Partners, MarEn Bakken and Phillips 66.

Energy Transfer Partners reports the Dakota Access Pipeline will have about a dozen employees in each of the four states it operates, including IL.

"The pipeline will transport light, sweet crude oil from North Dakota to major refining markets in a more direct, cost-effective, safer and more environmentally responsible manner than other modes of transportation, including rail or truck", the company said in a statement. The pipelines have commitments for approximately 520,000 barrels of oil per day and have a capacity of approximately 570,000 barrels per day.

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Crude oil is now flowing through the Dakota Access Pipeline, despite months of protests against it by Native American tribes and environmental groups.

The Sioux nation first protested the pipeline during the Obama administration, arguing it ran close to the Standing Rock Sioux reservation and over land they consider historically sacred.

The highly contentious Dakota Access Pipeline officially goes online Thursday as activist continue to claim the project's developers illegally leveled trees and trampled artifacts during the pipeline's construction phase.

In March, a USA appeals court in Washington denied the tribes' request for an emergency order that would have blocked the pipeline from being used, saying the plaintiffs had not met their "heavy burden" of proof for an injunction. But President Donald Trump, fulfilling campaign promises, quickly reversed Obama's decision after taking office.

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