Amy Dalrymple / Bismarck Tribune
BISMARCK -- A conflict between Burleigh County leaders and Bismarck legislators over establishing universal vote centers is resurfacing at the Capitol this session. Several Bismarck lawmakers are sponsoring a bill they say aims to promote collaboration with legislators and party leaders when a county commission considers changing voting locations.
BISMARCK -- Northern North Dakota landowners with a history of oil-related spills on their land have donated $250,000 to promote education about cleaning up brine spills. Daryl and Christine Peterson made the contribution this week to the Northwest Landowners Association Foundation. The Bottineau County couple said they want to bring more attention to what options landowners have when dealing with contamination from produced water or brine, a waste byproduct of oil production.
BISMARCK -- A new study shows it may be economically viable for North Dakota oil companies to temporarily store natural gas underground as an alternative to flaring. The study by the Energy and Environmental Research Center at the University of North Dakota found that injecting natural gas into an underground rock formation and withdrawing it later could allow companies to produce more oil and meet the state’s gas capture goals.
BISMARCK — Two bills introduced in the North Dakota Legislature would require law enforcement training and data collection related to missing and murdered indigenous people. The proposals, sponsored by Rep. Ruth Buffalo, D-Fargo, are mirrored after Savanna’s Act and prompted by discussions by a local task force following the 2017 death of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind in Fargo. “It’s unfortunate that it takes tragedy to sometimes bring people together to fix the gaps that exist,” Buffalo said Tuesday, Jan. 8. “Hopefully, moving forward, this can prevent further tragedies.”
FARGO — An attorney representing a group of North Dakota taxpayers argued Friday, Jan. 4, that a law approved by legislators two years ago “gives away” $2 billion in state oil and gas mineral assets and should be declared unconstitutional. Attorneys representing North Dakota said the legislation being challenged is not a giveaway, however, but a process to define the boundary and extent of the state’s mineral interests.
BISMARCK -- A legislator from the northeast North Dakota district, where an oil pipeline valve was tampered with in 2016, is pushing for a stronger deterrent for damaging critical infrastructure. Sen. Janne Myrdal, R-Edinburg, is sponsoring a bill that amends the language of state law to better define that it’s illegal to willfully tamper with or damage energy facilities and other infrastructure.
BISMARCK -- Royalty owners who supported legislation in 2017 related to oil and gas mineral ownership under Lake Sakakawea will likely have to make return trips to the state Capitol next year. The bill that legislators approved two years ago will be back for discussion in 2019, with a proposal to extend the time frame for royalty owners to be paid.
BISMARCK — Natural gas flaring reached record volumes in North Dakota in 2018, enough in October to heat 4.25 million average U.S. homes. The volume flared — 527 million cubic feet per day — could have met the natural gas needs for all of North Dakota and South Dakota, including industrial and commercial demand. Oil operators burned off the natural gas associated with oil production due to a lack of processing plant and pipeline capacity in the state.
BISMARCK — A 77-mile pipeline proposed for northwest North Dakota would transport natural gas liquids from a processing plant under construction in McKenzie County. Oneok is seeking a permit from the North Dakota Public Service Commission for the Demicks Lake Pipeline Project. The pipeline would transport 40,000 barrels of natural gas liquids per day from the Oneok Demicks Lake natural gas processing plant near Watford City to Richland County, Mont., where the larger Elk Creek Pipeline will be constructed.
BISMARCK — Members of the original committee that pushed for North Dakota’s Legacy Fund have reconvened and are cautioning against spending oil revenue before it’s in the bank. North Dakota Treasurer Kelly Schmidt is now a member of the committee that is working to educate the public and legislators as they consider proposals to tap into the earnings from the $5.6 billion fund. “We know there’s lots of ideas for spending Legacy Fund earnings,” said attorney Bob Harms, a member of