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Energy & Environment

PSC: No slowdown in pipeline sitings

Members of the North Dakota Public Service Commission say even with a supposed slowdown in the oil and gas industry – their workload hasn’t dropped off.

The PSC is still siting pipelines and gas processing plants.

"They talk about the slowdown of oil development," said Commissioner Brian Kalk. "We're certainly not seeing it."

"We're seeing a continual stream of applications for pipelines," said PSC Chairman Julie Fedorchak. "And all of them are eager to get the permits and start construction."

The PSC will hold a September hearing on a proposed crude oil pipeline project in McKenzie County.

NST Express wants to build a 23 mile, 12-inch diameter pipeline from about 9 miles northwest of Alexander to a rail transload facility near East Fairview. It would handle up to 150,000 barrels per day.

"Seems like they're (oil companies) are developing long term infrastructure -- a 20 mile pipeline here, a 12 mile pipeline there -- really developing infrastructure for the long term," said Kalk.

"This will make the next time, when things do pick up again out there, a lot more pleasant for those who have to livfe and work in that region," said Commissioner Randy Christmann.

The pipeline has an estimated cost of $60 to $80 million – and would go on line in 2016.

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