BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — The operator of the Dakota Access pipeline is planning to nearly double its capacity.

The Bismarck Tribune reports that Energy Transfer Partners plans to expand the pipeline's capacity from more than 500,000 barrels per day to as much as 1.1 million barrels.

ETP told North Dakota Public Service Commission in a letter Wednesday that the expansion will let the Texas-based company meet growing demand without additional pipelines or rail shipments.

The Dakota Access pipeline carries oil from North Dakota through South Dakota and Iowa to a shipping point in Illinois. The company said last year that it was planning to ship more crude to the Gulf Coast.

The pipeline sparked massive protests near the Standing Rock Indian reservation before it was completed and began moving oil in 2017.

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