PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — A federal appeals court ruled against a Rhode Island tribe Friday in a dispute over a natural gas pipeline built in Massachusetts on land with ceremonial stone groupings.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit dismissed a petition by the Narragansett Indian Tribe's historic preservation office for lack of jurisdiction.

The tribe argued that in authorizing the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. to build a pipeline across landscapes with sacred significance, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission denied it procedural protections of the National Historic Preservation Act. The tribe took issue with a nearly 4-mile-long pipeline segment near Sandisfield, Massachusetts.

The court found the tribe lacks standing to seek relief because the ceremonial landscapes had been destroyed by the time it filed its petition for review,.

The tribe sought to save 73 ceremonial stone landscapes in the pipeline’s path. Tennessee Gas proposed to remove them during construction and replace them later, but the tribe said that doing so would be equivalent to destroying the features because their spiritual work would be broken.

The regulatory commission allowed Tennessee Gas to start construction in April 2017. The work was completed later that year, destroying more than 20 ceremonial stone landscapes, according to the court.

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