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Protesters against the Dakota Access Pipeline in San Francisco in 2017. Photo: Joel Angel Juarez/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

A federal judge ordered Monday the shutdown of the Dakota Access Pipeline — a project at the heart of battles over oil-and-gas infrastructure — while the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers conducts a new environmental analysis.

Why it matters: The latest twist in the years-long fight over the pipeline is a defeat for the White House agenda of advancing fossil fuel projects and a win for Native Americans and environmentalists who oppose the project

  • The pipeline, which runs from North Dakota to an oil storage terminal in Illinois, began operating in 2017 with the backing of the Trump administration after several years of regulatory and legal jostling and major protests.

What happened: Judge James E. Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the D.C. Circuit vacated a critical easement while the Army Corps of Engineers prepares a previously ordered study called an environmental impact statement.

  • The judge wrote that he's "mindful of the disruption such a shutdown will cause."
  • But he adds that precedent and prior problems with the Corps' review "outweighs the negative effects of halting the oil flow for the thirteen months that the Corps believes the creation of an EIS will take."

The intrigue: It's the second big defeat or setback for a high-profile pipeline in as many days.

  • Dominion Energy and Duke Energy yesterday canceled the long-proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a major natural gas project also backed by the Trump administration, citing legal and permitting uncertainties.

Read the ruling.

Go deeper

Obama energy secretary on blackouts, campaign scrutiny

Ernest Moniz. Photo: NurPhoto / Contributor

Axios’ Amy Harder moderated an event Thursday that included Ernest Moniz, energy secretary under former President Barack Obama, where she asked him about some significant developments.

The big picture: The event presented research looking at the challenges of transitioning communities heavily dependent on oil, natural gas and coal to cleaner energy sources to address climate change.

Updated 20 mins ago - World

Myanmar's deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi sentenced to 4 years in prison

An anti-coup protest in Yangon, Myanmar.Photo: Hkun Lat/Getty Images

A Myanmar court sentenced the country's ousted leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, on Monday to four years in prison on charges of "inciting public unrest" and breaking COVID-19 protocols, per the New York Times.

Why it matters: It's the first of several verdicts that could result in the 76-year-old Nobel laureate being imprisoned for the rest of her life.

2 hours ago - World

Pope Francis denounces European governments' migrant response

Pope Francis adresses refugees at the Reception and Identification Centre (RIC) in Mytilene on the island of Lesbos on Sunday. Photo: Louisa Gouliamaki/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Pope Francis criticized European countries' response to migrants and asylum seekers during his visit to a refugee camp on the Greek island of Lesbos Sunday.

Why it matters: The pope said "migration is a humanitarian crisis that concerns everyone," but little had changed in the global response to displaced peoples since his first visit to Lesbos five years ago, per a transcript of his remarks. "Human lives, real people, are at stake. ... let us stop this shipwreck of civilization!"

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