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The 1,172-mile (1,885-km) pipeline will carry Bakken crude from North Dakota through the Midwest, which will then be transported through a connecting pipe to the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Oil is now flowing through the controversial Dakota Access pipeline, carrying crude from Canada and North Dakota south to IL, its developer said Thursday.

The developer of the Dakota Access oil pipeline, which is expected to begin shipping oil on Thursday, will face scrutiny later this summer on whether it violated North Dakota rules during construction.

On Thursday, a tribal leader said he'll keep fighting to stop the pipeline, even though it has already gone into use. Crude oil transported through the pipeline is sourced from six terminal locations in the North Dakota counties of Mountrail, McKenzie and Williams.

The tribe has pointed out three separate incidents of pipeline leaks recently in the area.

The pipeline extends from North Dakota, through South Dakota and Iowa, and into IL. It is capable of carrying 570,000 barrels of oil per day and is now transporting 520,000 per day.

The oil pipeline construction that sparked nationwide protests is now complete, and the pipeline is in service. Clashes with police at the protests turned violent at times, with one woman almost losing her arm after an explosion in November.

Demonstrators lived in a camp outside the pipeline's construction site for months before the state ordered the camp be vacated in February. Four Sioux tribes are now suing to shut down the line.

"Now that the Dakota Access pipeline is fully operational, we find it more urgent than ever that the courts and administration address the risks posed to the drinking water of millions of American citizens", Standing Rock Sioux Chairman Dave Archambault said in a statement. But President Donald Trump, fulfilling campaign promises, quickly reversed Obama's decision after taking office.