North Dakota AG Approves Ranch Sale to Pipeline Developer

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) – North Dakota’s attorney general has signed off on a purchase of ranch land by the company developing the Dakota Access pipeline.

Energy Transfer Partners bought some 6,000 acres of ranch property near an encampment where the Standing Rock Sioux and others have protested the pipeline for months. The company said the land, part of a century-old operation known as the Cannonball Ranch, would give its workers better access to its construction sites and the finished pipeline.

State law generally bars corporations from owning agricultural land, though there are exceptions. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said in a statement Tuesday that the purchase was temporarily necessary for commercial development. He said he would monitor how the land is used to make sure the company is complying with the corporate farming law.

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