News: County to try oil field brine for road dust control

An age-old problem in gravel-road country in getting a new take on an old solution. Dealing with dust and maintaining country roads — especially those traveled heavily during temporary uses like mining gravel — is an ongoing challenge. To address it, the County will be applying a brine solution byproduct from a local oil well on a trial basis. Jill Schramm has the story.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Minnesota power company looks to study big battery concept in South Dakota

One of the downsides of wind energy is there are times when it produces power that it isn’t demanded. That creates a storage problem. A Minnesota-based power company is looking to store that energy by pumping Missouri River water uphill where it can later be released for hydro-electric power generation. The Fargo Forum has the story on an idea that is very early in the development process.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: New film urges action to protect Badlands from oil impacts

Teddy Roosevelt came to the North Dakota Badlands more than a 130 years ago, and the spirit of conservation was one of the ideals he took back to the East Coast and ultimately, the Presidency. And according to one group of North Dakota citizens, that same call to conservation is needed again in our state’s oil region. They’ve made a film encouraging action; Amy Dalrymple with the Bismarck Tribune...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Continental Resources oil sale to China complex

One of North Dakota’s largest oil producers, Continental Resources, announced it has a deal in place to sell ~33,500 barrels per day of ND produced sweet crude to China. The deal creates logistics challenges in form of ensuring Continental oil isn’t comingled with other sources before being loaded and shipped, and it’s only possible because the ban on exporting U.S. oil was lifted in 2016.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Dakota Access increased ND tax revenue by $6M a month, state oil production up in August

In the early months of operation, the Dakota Access pipeline is proving to be a boon for North Dakota’s treasury. Because of lower costs getting oil to market, the price of North Dakota crude has gone up by about $2 per barrel since the line went operational. That equates to about $6 million per month in increased tax revenue.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Dakota Access helps drillers but isn’t a Bakken game-changer

The Dakota Access Pipeline has been online since June, and early indicators suggest that it’s reduced the cost of delivering North Dakota oil to market and added revenue to the state’s tax collections. But is it a game changer for the Bakken play? According to this Washington Post article featured in the Grand Forks Herald, perhaps not.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Enbridge pushes back on need for Line 3 oil pipeline replacement in Minnesota

Few infrastructure developments are more contentious these days than oil pipeline projects. We’ve had our own battles here in North Dakota, but in Minnesota getting pipelines approved is more difficult yet. But with regards to the Line 3 Pipeline from NE North Dakota to Superior Wisconsin, Enbridge is pushing back against regulatory slowplaying with facts on increasing demand and need.  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: After Hurricane Power Outages, Looking To Alaska’s Microgrids For A Better Way

If there’s anything we’ve learned from this year’s hurricane’s, it’s a lesson on the vulnerability of our power grid. How do we make ourselves more resilient? Perhaps a look north will provide the answer as Alaska’s isolated communities develop blueprints for sustainable, locally generated power infrastructure. It’s a relevant topic for North Dakota because as our energy customers become more locally resilient, they’ll have less need for the...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: EPA chief to discuss water regulations during visit to state

Scott Pruitt, the EPA’s top administrator, will be visiting North Dakota next week, and the Waters of the U.S. rule making is expected to be a hot topic of conversation. Between agricultural and energy industries and our cultural disposition toward property rights, environmental regulations and rules have big impacts on North Dakota, and it sounds like those are some of the messages that will be carried to Mr....  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

News: Half of Well Productivity Gains May be Due to Core Acreage Drilling, Not Better Frac Designs

There’s little doubt those operating in the Bakken have gotten more efficient in the past few years. The low prices have forced operators to get costs under control and the end result is an oil play that’s more economically resilient. But what about the wells, are we getting better at getting more oil out of them? On that point, the data isn’t as clear, and one MIT study...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share  

Commentary: Claims that renewable energy threatens the stability of the US power grid is ludicrous

A common argument heard in North Dakota is the need to maintain coal-fired power plants because of their ability to provide the basic baseline power needs of the electrical grid. That we would attach ourselves to arguments that defend an industry important to our state is not surprising; I would say it’s a natural reaction. There is another perspective, though. This commentary from Quartz defends the modernization of...  summary by: Josh Wolsky

Read & Share