Amy Dalrymple / Bismarck Tribune
The U.S. Forest Service is working to update its oil and gas leasing direction for the Little Missouri National Grassland, a document that hasn’t been updated since the Bakken oil boom was in its infancy. Changes proposed in the draft supplemental environmental impact statement would only affect 216,300 acres that are available for leasing but currently not leased. Lands that are already leased by oil and gas companies would not be affected unless those leases expire. The agency is considering three options: • Continue leasing with the current stipulations.
BISMARCK—North Dakota continued to set oil and gas production records in August, reaching nearly 1.3 million barrels per day, the Department of Mineral Resources said Friday. It was the first time North Dakota produced 40 million barrels in one month, said Lynn Helms, the department's director. The state also hit a natural gas production record with more than 2.4 billion cubic feet per day, according to the preliminary figures.
BISMARCK — Oasis Midstream Partners will celebrate Friday, Oct. 12, the completion of a natural gas processing plant, a highly anticipated project as North Dakota's oil industry works to reduce natural gas flaring. The Oasis Wild Basin II plant will add 200 million cubic feet per day of natural gas processing capacity, the first major plant completed in several years in the Bakken. Oasis CEO Taylor Reid said Thursday the plant near Watford City is mechanically complete and will begin processing gas in November.
BISMARCK—All five of North Dakota's Native American tribes have joined more than 440 other tribal nations to detail how they've been harmed by the nation's opioid epidemic. A legal brief recently filed in U.S. District Court in ongoing litigation against opioid manufacturers and distributors includes support from 448 federally recognized tribes.
BISMARCK—The first debate between Heidi Heitkamp and Kevin Cramer was canceled last week, but attendees at an energy conference on Monday, Oct. 8, got the next best thing. Sen. Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Rep. Cramer, R-N.D., shared a stage during a roundtable discussion at the Great Plains & EmPower ND Energy Conference in Bismarck, both touting their accomplishments to advance North Dakota energy. While it was not a campaign event, the political rivals seeking election to the U.S. Senate showed their differences and took occasional swipes at one another.
MANDAREE, N.D.—The Fort Berthold Protectors of Water and Earth Rights has joined other environmental groups in challenging the Trump administration's decision to roll back an Obama-era rule to capture methane. The groups filed a lawsuit over the Trump administration's decision to rescind the Bureau of Land Management's Waste Prevention Rule, arguing that the action violates federal policies.
BISMARCK — The North Dakota Industrial Commission has approved a drilling unit near Lake Sakakawea, but made some changes that regulators said would protect royalty owners. XTO Energy proposed to develop 26,000 acres in Williams and McKenzie counties as one large unit, a plan the company said would allow oil wells to be farther away from Lake Sakakawea. The company said during a hearing in April that the proposal, known as the Hofflund-Bakken Unit, would allow more oil to be recovered but minimize the impact to sensitive terrain.
BISMARCK — A company that's constructing a new natural gas processing plant in the core of the Bakken announced plans this week for a second plant, doubling the size of the project. Oneok plans to construct Demicks Lake II in McKenzie County, adding 200 million cubic feet per day of processing capacity. Demicks Lake I, which also will have a capacity of 200 million cubic feet per day, is under construction but expected to reach capacity soon after it's complete, Terry Spencer, Oneok president and CEO, said in a news release.
BISMARCK—The oil company that has faced opposition for drilling next to Lake Sakakawea on the Fort Berthold Reservation now proposes to drill 23 new wells near the lake. Slawson Exploration has drilling permit applications under review by the Bureau of Land Management for wells in five locations on the reservation, some less than 1,000 feet from the lake.
BISMARCK — Final recommendations related to a study of the ordinary high water mark of the Missouri River will be presented to the North Dakota Industrial Commission next week. The study by consultant Wenck Associates prompted objections from mineral owners and about 1,500 pages of public comment after it was made public last spring. One attorney warned the study would lead to more lawsuits unless it was modified, and professional land surveyors raised concerns about the review's methodology.