The Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) could be operational by next week, after a U.S. district judge in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday ruled against two tribes who had asked him to issue a preliminary injunction pausing construction.

The Standing Rock Sioux and the Cheyenne River Sioux said their legal battle would continue, despite Judge James Boasberg’s ruling.

“While this preliminary ruling is disappointing, it’s not surprising. It is very difficult to get an injunction in a case like this. The bigger legal battle is ahead—we stand strong,” said Dave Archambault II, chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux.

The tribes had asked Boasberg to instruct the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to withdraw permission for DAPL’s parent company, Energy Transfer Partners (ETP), to install pipes beneath Lake Oahe in North Dakota. President Donald Trump in January issued an executive order expediting DAPL’s construction and canceling the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which was underway at the time he took office.

Associated Press reports that Boasberg ruled against the tribes on the grounds that they had presented their new case—that the pipeline infringes on their right to practice their religion, which relies on clean water—too late.

However, no final decisions have been made on the tribes’ longstanding argument that DAPL threatens their cultural sites and access to clean water, and that the government should conduct a full EIS before allowing construction to move forward.

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