North Dakota feeling strain of oil boom

Nov. 5, 2012 at 8:57 AM
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BISMARCK, N.D., Nov. 5 (UPI) -- With a shortage of oil pipelines in the state, a North Dakota regulator said the state's road system might not be able to handle the oil boom.

About three-quarters of the crude oil produced in North Dakota is delivered by truck, putting a strain on the state's highway system. Oil production in North Dakota has increased every year for four years and Lynn Helms, director of the state Department of Mineral Resources, said the strain on roads isn't sustainable.

North Dakota Pipeline Authority Director Justin Kringstad was quoted by The Bismarck (N.D.) Tribune as saying pipelines "are the safest, most efficient way" of getting oil out of the region.

Canadian pipeline company Enbridge, said to be expanding its pipeline capacity in the states, has offered local farmers in the area compensation for 100 percent crop loss during pipeline construction. A farmer in western North Dakota told the newspaper that some landowners were giving their land away too cheaply.

In September, the North Dakota Industrial Commission, part of the oil and natural gas division at the Department of Mineral Resources, reported that less than 45 percent of its daily crude oil production was delivered by pipelines. Rail and truck deliveries, it said, "are adequate to keep up with near term production projections."

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