Farmers and customers will pay the price if Hollywood celebrities can persuade President Joe Biden to shut down the Dakota Access Pipeline, experts claim.
The pipeline was approved by former President Donald Trump in 2017 after being delayed by the Obama administration, during which Biden was vice president.
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According to Fox Business, a letter from more than 200 celebrities and activists called on Biden to shut down the pipeline, saying it threatens the climate and adversely affects the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.
The pipeline is undergoing an environmental assessment at the moment.
Proud to join up with the Avengers IRL, many amazing artists, & activists to #StandWithStandingRock & call on @POTUS @JoeBiden & @VP @KamalaHarris to shut down the illegal Dakota Access pipeline. It's time for #ClimateJustice. This is our moment! #NoDAPL https://t.co/GeiShcraTo
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When he blocked the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline as one of his first actions in office, Biden raised expectations among environmentalists.
Agricultural economist Elaine Kub said there are ripple effects to consider because if oil ends up being shipped by rail instead of by pipeline from the Bakken Shale in North Dakota, farmers selling their goods will suffer.
If DAPL gets shut down and a part of the crude oil that is at the moment being transported on the pipeline is shifted to the limited available rail car capacity, researchers are estimating that the whole industry of agriculture would bear losses of more than $1 billion in annual farm revenue among the countries within the Corn Belt.
The loss of revenue would cause farmers and processors to go out of business, eliminating employment in the agricultural sector, especially when it comes to the Upper Midwest states.
If DAPL shuts down, it is anticipated that a portion of its crude oil transport ability will move to rail lines that are already limited.