Protests have swept the US in opposition to an executive order President Donald Trump signed on Tuesday which will smooth the way for building the Dakota Access and Keystone Xl oil pipelines.

Protestors gathered from New York to Los Angeles, and outside the the White House in Washington DC, late on Tuesday 24 January.

"We're still here!" Protestors against the pipelines chanted outside the White House. And in Los Angeles they shouted "water is life!"

Earlier in the day Trump rolled back former President Barack Obama's 2015 rejection of the 3,456km Keystone XL pipeline project that would bring oil from Canada to refineries in the US. The 1,825km Dakota Access pipeline cuts across land near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation. Construction was blocked in late 2016 after massive protests on the land by the tribe and other activists.

The Standing Rock Sioux tribe has been camped on the construction site since September after a judge rejected their lawsuit to stop construction.

"Americans know this pipeline was unfairly rerouted towards our nation and without our consent. The existing pipeline route risks infringing on our treaty rights, contaminating our water and the water of 17 million Americans downstream," said Dave Archambault II, chairman of the Standing Rock tribe, in a statement.

During his 2016 election campaign Trump said he would increase America's use of fossil fuels and reverse environmental protections.

The Standing Rock Sioux argued the $3.8bn (£2.86bn) pipeline would destroy sacred burial grounds, prayer sites, and could taint the water supply of their reservation. Particularly controversial is a plan to tunnel it under the Missouri River. A leak there could pollute water for both the Sioux reservation and other cities in the state that draw water from the river.

The executive order and protests came the same day that a pipeline in western Canada leaked more than 200,000 litres of oil near the Ocean Man First Nation and cut off the drinking water supply for two cities.

The fight for water is literally the fight for our, and the planet's, survival 🌎 #nodapl #waterislife #losangeles

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