BISMARCK, N.D., May 24 (UPI) -- A trade group representing the oil industry said energy production in North Dakota is providing a major economic stimulus in the state.
American Petroleum Institute President and Chief Executive Officer Jack Gerard, during a keynote address at a regional energy conference, said the employment and economic outlook for North Dakota surpasses the rest of the nation.
"The average oil and gas job pays more than $70,000, nearly double the annual average salary in the state," he said. "And this success story is the direct result of responsible energy production in North Dakota."
North Dakota officials said data showed the state was now producing about 510,000 barrels of oil per day, an increase of more than 150,000 bpd compared with the previous year.
Authorities said oil production in the state was increasing steadily by as much as 40,000 bpd every month since June.
Oklahoma natural gas company Oneok Partners announced plans in April for a 1,300-mile pipeline from oil deposits in North Dakota to the Cushing hub in Oklahoma. The project could carry as much as 200,000 barrels of crude oil per day.
Most crude oil shipped from North Dakota is transported by rail.