April 9 (UPI) -- The Biden administration on Friday indicated in court it will not shut down operation of the Dakota Access Pipeline while it conducts an environmental review.
U.S. government lawyer Ben Schifman told the court the Army Corps of Engineers "is essentially in a continuous process of evaluating" the project, according to CNN.
He said the decision to continue use of the pipeline may change in the future pending "continuing discretion."
Jan Hasselman, an attorney for the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, which opposes the pipeline on environmental grounds, said he was "deeply disappointed."
"The company gets to keep the benefits of operating the pipeline that was never properly authorized while the community has to bear the risks," he said. "It's not right. It's a continuation of a terrible history."
Judge James Boasberg said he'd evaluate the tribe's request that the pipeline be halted, The Hill reported.
The Dakota Access Pipeline, owned by Texas-based Energy Transfer, runs nearly 1,200 miles from oil fiends in North Dakota, south through South Dakota and Iowa, ending in Illinois. It was completed in 2017 despite protests and lawsuits brought by the Standing Rock Sioux tribe.