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Dalrymple wants safer oil transit measures

QER "great opportunity" to lean on Washington, North Dakota's governor says.

By Daniel J. Graeber

BISMARCK, N.D., Aug. 12 (UPI) -- North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple said he was pressing the U.S. energy secretary on comprehensive ways to make crude oil transportation safer.

Dalrymple met with federal officials in Bismark to take part in the U.S. Energy Department's Quadrennial Energy Review. He said he was there to press U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz on ways to make the transportation of crude oil as safe as possible.

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The state's government said May oil production, the last full month for which data are available, was 1.04 million barrels per day, a new all-time high for the state and the second consecutive month with oil output above the 1 million bpd mark.

More than 90 percent of the oil produced from North Dakota comes from the Bakken reserve area, though there's not enough pipeline capacity to keep up with the accelerating pace of production. Industry officials say that leaves rail as the primary alternative transit method.

Dalrymple said in a statement Monday the meeting was a "great opportunity to press the secretary for continued support in addressing important issues, including transportation safety, pipeline development and value-added opportunities."

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The governor in June boasted gross domestic product in the state had increased for the fourth year in a row and topped all other U.S. states. The state's mineral resources accounted for 3.6 percent of the growth in gross domestic product.

The North Dakota Attorney General's Office says drug crimes are up 19.5 percent from last year.

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