The North Dakota Department of Agriculture released a memo Monday quantifying some of the costs that the months long protest has had on area farmers and ranchers.
According to the release, local ranchers have incurred individual losses of $15,000 to $20,000 while the state Ag Department has spent 900 hours responding to protest-related activities, including pest-infested firewood.
- Number of Morton County households affected by protest activities: 544
- Individual losses claimed by Morton County farmers and ranchers: $15K-$20K
- Livestock killed or missing: 23
- Livestock injured: 34
- Number of hours Ag Dept. has spent on potentially pest-infested firewood: 200
- Ag Dept. employee hours dedicated to pipeline protest-related activities: 700
- Emotional and mental distress and anguish for rural families: Widespread
Farmers and ranchers have also been subject to intimidation and harassment from out-of-state protesters who’ve consistently demonstrated a complete lack of respect for those who live and conduct business in Morton County.