“Wild Rice” is plaintiff in Minnesota / ND oil pipeline lawsuit

You can’t make this stuff up! Will “Wild Rice” speak?

Wild rice is the main plaintiff in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in the White Earth Nation Tribal Court and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is one of the defendants. Those who know wild rice best call it manoomin; an Ojibway word that can Translate to the right seed. But for my purposes, I stick to “wild rice”.

This is only the second “rights of nature” case to be filed in the United States.

Where Dr. Suess’ Lorax said “I speak for the trees”, wild rice is leading the charge on this one. The Republic.com explains legal theory is- nature itself has the right to exist and to flourish. I think after all the usual legal wrangling over the pipeline protest has been exhausted, this is just a really fun last resort legal resource.

I know North Dakotas are still suffering from the fatigue of the pipeline protests, especially around the Bismarck / Mandan area. So maybe you missed my story from June 2021, on the arrest of more than 250 conservationists protesting the replacement of the Enbridge Energy Line 3 pipeline that crosses North Dakota and Minnesota en route to Lake Superior in Wisconsin. But in two months, these protests have not slowed down a bit.

To date, more than 700 people have been charged with demonstrating along the route.

Wild Rice claims its rights were violated in addition to the treaty rights of tribal members to gather wild rice, fish and hunt outside of reservations. Wild Rice goes so far as to accuse Enbridge of pumping up to 5 billion gallons of groundwater out of its construction areas. During a drought no less.

It seems that “wild rice” is not seeking financial reparations, but is simply trying to stop construction.

Is there a “grain” of hope for this affair? In Wild Rice v. MDNR, what do you say, good people? Yes or no ?

As the author of this article, I have to reveal that the Chicken Wild Rice Soup is absolutely my favorite. I tried not to let this relationship scent the truth.


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