natural gas

'After-the-fact' pipeline hearing scheduled

Aug 21, 2013

Under normal circumstances, the Public Service Commission holds hearings on proposed projects – like natural gas pipelines.

But the Commission will be holding a siting hearing “after the fact.”

In 2008, Hiland Operating, LLC built a 6.5 mile natural gas line in Divide and Burke Counties. It did so without a permit.

"They thought it was a gathering line," said Public Service Commissioner Julie Fedorchak. "Under the definition, it does not require a permit. But it's clearly a transmission line."

The new federal Secretary of the Interior says it’s very important that industry, the federal government and the state government work together to make sure energy development in North Dakota is done well – and done with a sensitivity to environmental concerns.

Sally Jewell toured western North Dakota oil fields, as well as the Theodore Roosevelt National Park.

Natural gas flaring still nearly 30 percent

Jun 17, 2013

Nearly 30 percent of natural gas produced in the Bakken is flared.

And state officials continue to work to reduce that flared amount.

Natural gas is a byproduct of oil development in the Bakken. State mineral resources director Lynn Helms says newer wells are being connected to gas gathering systems, so that gas isn’t being flared. However, he says some wells that have been connected to gas gathering systems for some time are now flaring more of their natural gas.

Natural gas flaring still nearly 30 percent

Jun 17, 2013

Nearly 30 percent of natural gas produced in the Bakken is flared.

And state officials continue to work to reduce that flared amount.

Natural gas is a byproduct of oil development in the Bakken. State mineral resources director Lynn Helms says newer wells are being connected to gas gathering systems, so that gas isn’t being flared. However, he says some wells that have been connected to gas gathering systems for some time are now flaring more of their natural gas.

New natural gas pipeline supported

Jun 17, 2013

The director of North Dakota’s Pipeline Authority says he’s excited about MDU’s plans for a new pipeline to bring Bakken natural gas to eastern North Dakota and western Minnesota.

The pipeline would run from near Williston to the Viking pipeline north of Moorhead.

PSC okays another natural gas processing plant

May 22, 2013

An Oklahoma-based natural gas processing company now has the okay to build a third 100-million cubic feet processing plant.

One OK plans to build the plant – dubbed Garden Creek Three – in the same general area as two other processing plants. The Public Service Commission gave its go-ahead. Commissioner Julie Fedorchak says this will help reduce the flaring of natural gas produced in the Bakken.

"In North Dakota, natural gas is like the really talented stepchild," said Fedorchak. "It isn't what we're actually going for. We are an oil state, and gas is a by-prodct."

The director of the North Dakota Pipeline Authority says he expects the percentage of natural gas being flared in North Dakota will be gradually reduced over the next several months.

"The thing that I watch from my office is how quickly we can get the wells connected to the gas gathering systems," said Justin Kringstad. "We're hoping that in the next 6-12 months, we'll see some pretty significant strides in how we get the wells connected, bringing that flaring percentage down."

Flaring bill defeated

Feb 14, 2013

A bill designed to end the flaring of natural gas in western North Dakota has been defeated in the North Dakota Senate.

Currently, nearily a third of the natural gas produced by oil drilling in the Bakken is flared. Under current law, a company can flare the gas for a year without penalty – and may as for a waiver.  Sen. Tim Mathern (D-Fargo) wanted to eliminate any waivers.

"I thin k we're missing out on an economic opportunity," Mathern told his Senate colleagues. "We're being wasteful of the environment, we're being wasteful of energy and the resources before us."

As oil production rises in the Bakken, so does the production of natural gas.

The problem is -- just over 30 percent of the natural gas produced in the Bakken is flared.

Natural gas power plants coming to ND?

Oct 15, 2012

Montana Dakota Utilities has filed a site request for its proposed 88-megawatt natural gas fired power plant.

The site is next to the existing Heskett coal-fired plant, just north of Mandan.

"The idea is to start construction next year, so that the plant is in operation by the peak demand of summer, 2015," said MDU spokesman Mark Hanson.

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