Tag: Governor Doug Burgum

Governor Burgum and Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Discuss Clean-Up Plan

BISMARCK – Governor Doug Burgum and Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Chairman Dave Archambault II had a lengthy telephone conversation about ongoing efforts to clean up and vacate the Dakota Access Pipeline opposition camp on federal land managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in southern Morton County:

  • Gov. Burgum and Chairman Archambault discussed their mutual understanding of the importance of evacuating and cleaning up the main Oceti Sakowin camp to protect human life and prevent contamination of the land and the Cannonball and Missouri rivers in the likely event of flooding.
  • The chairman and governor also discussed coordinated efforts by the tribe, state and county to remove garbage, structures, vehicles and other debris from the main camp. More than 230 truckloads had been hauled out as of Monday.
  • Both leaders stressed the importance of keeping open lines of communication, including a one-page flyer that will be distributed at the traffic control point south of the camp. Among other information, the flyer reminds people that the main camp will be evacuated at 2 p.m. Wednesday and re-entry will not be allowed, per the governor’s evacuation order and the Army Corps of Engineers’ eviction notice.
  • Gov. Burgum informed Chairman Archambault that the Backwater Bridge on Highway 1806 has been repaired and emergency vehicles are being allowed through a checkpoint south of the bridge. The governor noted that a Standing Rock ambulance was unable to pass through the checkpoint Sunday because of protester activity blocking the highway.

Meanwhile, the North Dakota Department of Human Services, North Dakota Department of Emergency Services and the North Dakota Department of Health have partnered to set up a travel assistance center. This free service will provide protesters with support as they prepare for their return home.

The transportation assistance center will offer personal kits, water and snacks, health/wellness assessments, bus fare for a return trip home, a food voucher, hotel lodging for one night, and a taxi voucher to the bus terminal.

Transportation will be provided from the protest camp to the assistance center. All camp residents are encouraged to take advantage of these amenities.

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The Floods Are Coming!

BISMARCK –  Residents and businesses across North Dakota are still clearing snow, after the historic storms of late 2016, and early January. However, after the hardship this winter weather has brought us, we still have to brace ourselves for the impending floods this spring.

Heavy snowpacks surrounding cities located by rivers, such as Fargo, Minot, and Jametown,  have a limited amount of time to prepare, as warmer weather and sunshine slowly begins to creep in.

Massive floods have destroyed many areas along the Red River, Missouri, Souris  River, as well as the Knife River and James River over the last decade, with very little time after snow cleanup, to sandbag and hold flood plains.

Governor Doug Burgum even warned protesters of the Dakota Access Pipeline in his State of the State address of the risk, “..the main protest camp is located directly in the floodplain of the Cannonball-Missouri River confluence. Given the snowfall we’re having this winter and historic data on the Cannonball River, that camp will likely flood in early March.”

However, weather observers in the area caution that it may not be as disastrous as predicted, depending on conditions, such as water levels, soil conditions, and how fast the snow melts in the spring.

“It is absolutely not a slam dunk that we’re going to see widespread flooding on any river basin, whether it’s the Souris River Basin, or the Heart, or the Cannonball, or the Knife River- none of them have a guaranteed flood,” said  Allen Schlag with the National Weather Service in Bismarck. “What we still have is plenty of time to see this very impressive snow pack disappear to sublimation, or in the springtime, maybe we’ll have a melt condition where we see it run off very slowly over the course of two or three weeks, as opposed to two or three days.”

Everyone is encouraged to be prepared none the less, following our recent history with flooding in the last decade. Please bookmark this page for future flood information: National Weather Service North Dakota Flooding

[Filed by Piper Combs]