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North Dakota sets oil, gas production records

Aug. 15, 2013 at 1:21 PM

BISMARCK, N.D., Aug. 15 (UPI) -- North Dakota broke records in June with more than 821,000 barrels of oil and 930 million cubic feet of natural gas per day produced, a state agency said.

The North Dakota Industrial Commission published its regular monthly "director's cut" of oil and natural gas activity in the state. The state hosts the Three Forks and Bakken shale reserve areas, which put the state in the No. 2 spot behind Texas in terms of production of natural resources.

The NDIC said the June production of 821,415 barrels of oil per day was an all-time high and 1.2 percent higher than the previous record in May. June gas production of 930 million cubic feet per day was a record high for the state.

Lynn Helms, the state Department of Mineral Resources director, said in a statement Thursday permits for drilling in the state were accelerating, as operators started making preparations for winter. Leasing activity, however, was low, consisting mostly of renewals in the Three Forks and Bakken areas.

U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell toured oil and natural gas production facilities in the state last week. North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple, a Republican, told Jewell the states, not the federal government, should be leading the way in regulating energy development.

Helms said "uncertainty" regarding federal policies on drilling was making investors in the state "nervous."

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