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Register now for ACE 2016 in Calgary and explore the ways you can learn invaluable knowledge, build your network and sharpen your skills.
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(Photo courtesy of State Historical Society of North Dakota, William E. (Bill) Shemorry Photograph Collection)

April marks 65 years since North Dakota first became an oil producing state. Although there have been ups and downs, the industry continues today and is among the top oil producers in the world.  And it all started with the Clarence Iverson #1.

According to Clarence Herz, legend had it that when a landman approached a North Dakota wheat farmer about leasing his mineral rights for oil exploration he said he’d be glad to sign a lease and quipped, “I’ll drink all the oil you get in North Dakota.”

Herz continues:
On April 4th, 1951, North Dakota, after unsuccessfully exploring for 34 years, became the 27th state to produce petroleum.  The discovery well, Amerada Petroleum’s Clarence Iverson #1, produced nearly 250 barrels of oil per day.  It was North Dakota’s only producing well in 1951, as the other 9 attempts, all outside of the Williston Basin, were dry holes. The other nine wells, none of which were drilled by Amerada, were in Cavalier (4), Grand Forks, Morton, Pembina, Pierce, and Stutsman counties.

Click here to continue reading the history of North Dakota’s first well.

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Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a nationwide stay on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPAs) new regulations on coal-fired power plants. This decision provides states like Montana – and over half of the states in our nation – relief from these overreaching and misguided regulations while they are being challenged in court.

These latest EPA regulations are part of the Obama administration’s relentless attacks on affordable energy and good-paying Montana jobs. The federal government’s misguided plan would lead our country in the wrong direction – away from being an energy leader—and would destroy thousands of good-paying Montana jobs.

As a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, I’m working to move forward commonsense policies that help secure an all-of-the-above energy solution and push back on job-killing regulations that threaten Montana’s energy future.

By promoting innovation and responsibly developing Montana’s vast resources, we can secure abundant energy that is clean, affordable and reliable.

The 2015 Economic Outlook recently published by the University of Montana Bureau of Business and Economic Research showed how technology and innovation have already revolutionized the American energy industry to make made-in-America energy resources more accessible than ever.

Montana is ranked at the top in U.S. coal deposits, has rich oil and gas deposits including portions of the Bakken and Three Forks formations, has immense hydropower, solar and biomass potential, and is first in wind potential. Montana is truly an example of what an all-of-the-above energy plan can look like and is well-equipped for continued growth.

But despite this encouraging news – and even with the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling to halt the Obama administration’s new regulations— Montana still faces challenges in reaching its full energy potential. We need to work toward comprehensive solutions that encourage innovation, grow our economy and revolutionize how we produce and distribute energy.

That’s why I’m hosting Montana Energy 2016 in Billings from March 29 to 31. Back for its third year, this comprehensive conference will focus on made-in-Montana energy and the good paying jobs it creates.

Montana holds a vital role in securing our nation’s all-of-the-above energy strategy and this conference comes at a vital time when our nation needs leadership. Montana Energy 2016 will bring together energy leaders to help increase innovation and move Montana’s energy opportunities to the next level.

Registration is open, with discounted rates for service members and students. Please visit www.MontanaEnergy.net to learn more and to register. Join me for Montana Energy 2016 so that we can work together to ensure that Montana remains an energy leader for years to come.

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Bismarck, N.D. – The Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) unnecessary and duplicative proposed rules for venting and flaring could reduce production on impacted leases, reduce state tax revenues and cost thousands of private royalty owners millions in lost royalty income, according to the North Dakota Petroleum Council (NDPC).

“The industry supports the goals of capturing greater quantities of associated gas and reducing waste but this one-size-fits-all federal process could come at a huge cost to North Dakotans while providing few – if any – benefits,” said Tessa Sandstrom, communications manager for the NDPC.

Early industry estimates anticipate production could decrease by more than 20 percent from more than 2,780 affected wells. This would cost the state $23.8 million in oil and gas severance taxes and North Dakota mineral owners more than $39.1 million in lost royalty income if the rule were fully implemented.

“The BLM claims that they could collect $23 million in additional royalty revenues for the federal government, but even if that were true, it would be at the expense of more than $62.9 million in tax revenues and royalty income in North Dakota alone,” said Sandstrom.

“North Dakota already has some of the most comprehensive regulations addressing flaring in the nation. Over the past two years, North Dakota has adopted a series of strict gas capture targets. At the same time, the industry has voluntarily made huge strides in natural gas capture by investing more than $13 billion in natural gas infrastructure since 2006. As a result, flaring has declined even as natural gas production increased.

“This progress has been despite federal regulations, which is often responsible for delays preventing industry from building infrastructure needed to capture more gas. BLM’s staff, time and resources are already overtaxed. Implementing rules and regulations that are already covered by state or other federal agencies is unnecessary and will only further burden employees and dilute their ability to perform their duties. BLM and other federal agencies could make a larger, more immediate impact on reducing flaring by instead fixing permitting, infrastructure and pipeline delays.”

About the North Dakota Petroleum Council
Since 1952, the Petroleum Council has been the primary voice of the oil and gas industry in North Dakota. The Petroleum Council represents more than 500 companies involved in all aspects of the oil and gas industry, including oil and gas production, refining, pipeline, mineral leasing, consulting, legal work, and oil field service activities in North Dakota, South Dakota, and the Rocky Mountain Region. For more information, go to www.ndoil.org.

Media Contact:
Tessa Sandstrom, Communications Manager  | ND Petroleum Council
701.223.6380, tsandstrom@ndoil.org

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19th Annual Dickinson API Gumbo Cookoff – hosted by Dickinson API Chapter
18 teams will square off for best gumbo. Prizes, raffles, live music, dancing and more!
When:          Saturday, February 20
11:00 a.m.   Teams start cooking; public is welcome to attend and watch;
6:30 p.m.     Gumbo tasting starts until gone
8:30 p.m.     Live Music and dance with EZ Street Band
Where:         Quality Inn & Suites, Dickinson, ND
More Info:    http://apidickinson.org/event/api-gumbo-cookoff/?instance_id=30

4th Annual Bakken BBQ
Industry teams join forces to BBQ for Make-a-Wish Foundation!
When:          June 17, 2016
Where:         West River Ice Rink
More Info:   https://www.facebook.com/BBQ4Cause/?fref=ts

North Dakota Oil Can! Teacher Seminar
Teachers are invited to attend a seminar to learn the ins and outs of the oil industry, tour a well site and other facilities, and take lesson plans back to their classrooms all while earning continuing educatoin credits.
When:         June 20-23, 2016
Where:        Bismarck, ND
More info:  The seminar is limited to just 50 teachers, but there are still spots available. Learn more and apply at http://www.ndoil.org/events/teacher_education/.

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“Doing it Right in the Bakken” & Beyond!  Mailed Nationwide.

BOBJ Publisher, Mary Edwards, got the opportunity to speak via SKYPE with Mark LaCour, Oil & Gas Sales Expert… about what’s happening for 2016, the publication’s “Industry niche” and so much more…. check it out! A great interview.

About: In his career Mark has sold over $205 million to the oil & gas industry and has had over 2200 meetings with almost every oil & gas company that you can name. He’s done business in the North Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, the UK, Middle East, Mexico, Canada, Norway, Scotland, Brazil and in the good ol’ US of A. He is the Director of Public Relations for the American Petroleum Institute (the API) Houston chapter, the largest group representing the oil & gas industry to congress. And he has a well-earned reputation as an industry “insider” and independent 3rd party market researcher. He is an author, sits on several oil & gas boards, has one of the top oil & gas presences in social media and when he not volunteering his time teaching STEM’s at local schools he helps other companies sell their products and services to oil and gas companies at modalpoint.com.

 

Will falling shale oil production lead to a reduction in crude-oil prices

By: MyraP. Saefong, Markets/commodities reporter

U.S. Energy Information Administration

Key U.S. tight oil and shale gas regions.

Oil production from the Bakken and Eagle Ford shale plays in the U.S. has been falling since March, but traders shouldn’t be quick to assume that will translate into lower supplies and higher prices.

Total oil output from seven major U.S. shale regions is expected to fall by 118,000 barrels a day to about 4.95 million barrels a day in December, according to the Energy Information Administration’s monthly Drilling Productivity Report released Monday. The data show that production from the Bakken and Eagle Ford shale regions are both likely to show declines next month, which would mark 10 months in a row.

Read: Discontent with OPEC spills into the open

“Bakken oil producers are still going after the low hanging fruit and leaving the high ones until prices go back up,” said Bob van der Valk, senior editor of the Bakken Oil Business Journal

Indeed, analysts have been quick to attribute the declines to low oil prices, with West Texas Intermediate crude futures CLZ5, -2.58%  down more than 17% year to date—and some have said that once a trend of production declines forms, higher oil prices will follow.

“There is no evidence at current prices that rig drilling activity will recover any time this year, so we can expect ever lower production every month well into 2016,” said James Williams, energy economist at WTRG Ecomomics.

He expects December production in the shale plays to be down 550,000 barrels a day from the peak seen in April.

But a closer look shows that production from the Permian Basin, which is located in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico, is forecast to climb by 11,000 barrels a day to roughly 2.02 million barrels a day next month. Output from that shale play has been climbing all year.

U.S. Energy Information Administration

“Right now, the Permian looks like the most profitable play,” said Michael Lynch, president of Strategic Energy & Economic Research (SEER).

That is due in part to location, he said. The Eagle Ford shale play is in South Texas, but Bakken Shale is located in eastern Montana and Western North Dakota as well as parts of Canada.

“You have to bring workers from outside North Dakota and so salaries for everything, even hamburger flippers, is elevated,” Lynch said. “Much less so in Texas.”

‘Quite possibly, the redeployment of money, rigs and personnel to the Southwest will mean that even low drilling activity allows shale-oil production to expand.’ ~ Michael Lynch, SEER

So, “quite possibly, the redeployment of money, rigs and personnel to the Southwest will mean that even low drilling activity allows shale-oil production to expand,” he said.

Williams, however, pointed out that the EIA report shows that the number of new oil barrels we can expect per rig showed no improvement in the Eagle Ford and Bakken, and the increase in the Permian was “minimal.”

“Previously, the barrels per rig often showed substantial gains as drillers became more efficient and focused drilling to the sweet spots,” said Williams. “We cannot expect efficiency gains at the same level that we experienced over the last year.”

Still, Lynch noted three key reasons why oil prices won’t climb soon: higher shale output, the return of Iran’s oil to the global market as sanctions are lifted following its nuclear agreement with western powers, and production increases elsewhere in the world.

The combination of those factors will mean there is “no room for prices to rise,” he said.

Retrieved 11-11-15 from MarketWatch.

Registration for the North Dakota Petroleum Council’s (NDPC) 34th Annual Meeting to be held in Fargo, N.D., on Sept. 21-23, 2015 will open July 8. The Annual Meeting will include presentations from several industry leaders and key decision makers who will focus on the biggest issues and challenges facing the oil and gas industry today.

In addition to the Annual Meeting, the NDPC will co-host an informational seminar, “Drilling Bits and Coding Bytes” that will be free and open the public. The seminar will focus on the technological advances and contributions that Fargo-area businesses are making to enhance the petroleum industry. A Bakken Basics Information Session will also be held for those wishing to learn more about oil and gas development from industry experts.

“We are excited to be in Fargo this year for our annual meeting,” said Ron Ness, president for the NDPC. “The opportunities extend far beyond the Bakken, into the Red River Valley and across state borders. There are tremendous opportunities for entrepreneurs to find their niche and help mold a modern, technology-driven oilfield. There’s no better place that proves that better than Fargo, which is home to world-class technology and research facilities.”

“We are so excited and proud to be hosting our first North Dakota Petroleum event in Fargo,” said Jill Halvorson with the Fargo-Moorhead Convention & Visitors Bureau. “It is an honor to be able to show off what we love about Fargo to a group that is coming from all across our great state. We will be pulling out all the stops to make sure that when they leave on Sept. 23, the question will be ‘When can we come back?’”

The information sessions and seminar will be held Monday, Sept. 21 in the Fargo Theater in Downtown Fargo and are free to attend.

The NDPC Annual Meeting will be held at the Ramada Plaza Suites on Sept. 22 and 23. Registration for NDPC members is $300 and $600 for nonmembers. For registration and more information about the meeting, including a full list of hotels in Fargo, dining, flights, and the most up-to-date agenda, visit https://annualmeeting.risprojects.org/Default.aspx.

Media wishing to register for the annual meeting may request media credentials from Tessa Sandstrom at 701-557-7744 or tsandstrom@ndoil.org.
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Since 1952, the Petroleum Council has been the primary voice of the oil and gas industry in North Dakota. The Petroleum Council represents more than 525 companies involved in all aspects of the oil and gas industry, including oil and gas production, refining, pipeline, mineral leasing, consulting, legal work, and oil field service activities in North Dakota, South Dakota, and the Rocky Mountain Region. For more information, go to www.ndoil.org.

Media Contact:
Tessa Sandstrom | Communications Manager, ND Petroleum Council | 701.223.6380 | tsandstrom@ndoil.org

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Washington, D.C. – Kari Cutting, vice president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council (NDPC) will appear before the U.S. House Committee on Agriculture tomorrow, Wednesday, July 8, to urge lawmakers to lift the ban on exporting crude oil and to highlight the positive economic impacts oil and gas development has had on rural communities, especially in North Dakota.

“In 2006, horizontal drilling technology unlocked the Bakken, resulting in a surge of oil and gas production, making North Dakota equivalent to the nineteenth largest oil producing country,” says Cutting. “With development came a rural economic renaissance for our state. Once shrinking rural communities are now growing, as new people move to the state and others return home to be closer to family. Oil development has helped supplement incomes for many local farmers and ranchers who once worried about holding on to the family farm. A new diesel refinery that recently began operating and proposed fertilizer plants and other value-added projects will help further lower input costs for ag producers further helping rural growth.”

“But this rural renaissance is being threatened by foreign entities not always friendly to the United States and by restrictions imposed on the sale of oil abroad. The U.S. government should lift the ban on crude oil exports and allow oil produced in places like North Dakota to reach global markets. Lifting the ban on crude oil exports would immediately restore our competitiveness and revive the renaissance in rural America.  Not only would rural America prosper, but all U.S. citizens would benefit from lifting the ban.”

The hearing is scheduled for 10 a.m. Eastern time in the Longworth House Office Building. The hearing may be viewed live at http://agriculture.house.gov/hearing/full-committee-agriculture-public-hearing-energy-and-rural-economy-economic-impact-exporting#. Cutting’s prepared testimony for the hearing is attached.

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Since 1952, the Petroleum Council has been the primary voice of the oil and gas industry in North Dakota. The Petroleum Council represents more than 525 companies involved in all aspects of the oil and gas industry, including oil and gas production, refining, pipeline, mineral leasing, consulting, legal work, and oil field service activities in North Dakota, South Dakota, and the Rocky Mountain Region. For more information, go to www.ndoil.org.

Media Contact:
Tessa Sandstrom
Communications Manager
ND Petroleum Council
701.223.6380
tsandstrom@ndoil.org

The Northern Plains Resource Council (NPRC) has asked the Board of Oil and Gas Conservation to commence rule making to impose quarter mile (1,320 ft) setbacks of drilling rigs from occupied dwellings. This is a greater distance than the proposal struck down before the legislative Senate Natural Resources committee just months ago, after ample testimony on both sides.

NPRC claims that because other states have imposed setbacks, Montana should follow suit for the benefit of landowners. However, existing statute and administrative rules, along with the structure and function of the BOGC, are a made in Montana solution that works. Using a checklist of out of state rules and regulations to shape policy in Montana is not a good idea. Doing so neglects to take into account those attributes which are unique to Montana.

This Wednesday, at a public meeting before the Board of Oil and Gas Conservation (BOGC), the Montana Petroleum Association (MPA) will be providing comments on how implementation of the proposed rule would negatively impact oil and gas opportunities in Montana, siting that:

  • Montana’s drilling and permitting activity pales in comparison to other states who’ve elected to impose setbacks, especially with consideration to densely populated areas
  • Other states do not have the same protest ability that Montana landowners do with regard to oil and gas drilling
  • The public, including land/surface owners, have considerable access to the BOGC
  • Montana’s BOGC is set up to mitigate concerns on a case by case basis; ensuring responsible and efficient development of mineral resources
  • If imposed, drilling opportunities in Montana would be severely impacted, with many small and exploratory oil and gas operators essentially placed out of business without the ability to drill into small target formations
  • Many claim horizontal wells have greater flexibility in surface placement, however, operators seek to evenly space wells within a DSU (drilling spacing unit)
  • Setbacks would reduce the number of wells there could be in a given DSU (within the same lease), shorten laterals, thereby increasing wasted oil and gas reserves, and lessening both production revenue (including that to the state and counties) and royalty payments to mineral owners, which include universities, hospitals, and charitable organizations
  • Setbacks neglect to recognize that minerals are the dominate estate (under common law) in split estate scenarios.
  • Setbacks act as a taking of mineral owners rights without compensation
  • Correlative rights of mineral owners are compromised by setback rules administered as a “one-size-fits-all” rule
  • Potential legal conflicts exist with regard to treatment of existing leases under setback rules
  • Surface use agreements are currently negotiated between landowner and operator, prior to drilling
  • The BOGC sites less than a handful of cases wherein a surface owner came before the Board with a concern over the placement of a well
  • The BOGC currently has the ability to exercise authority over well placement to mitigate surface owner concerns when necessary, based on potential harms
  • Montana has a longstanding history of environmentally responsible development of oil and gas, without negative impacts on air, soil, or water

The rule would have widespread effects on Montana’s economy and on mineral rights. Mineral owners, royalty recipients, and oil and gas operators with an interest in preserving future drilling opportunities in the Treasure State ought to weigh in at the June 24th meeting at the Board of Oil and Gas Conservation office in Billings, 2535 St. Johns Avenue, at 1:00 pm.

Public hearings will follow at a date TBD, should the Board commence rule making.

Interested parties may contact the Montana Petroleum Association at mpa@montanapetroleum.org to stay updated on the issue, and to be notified of future opportunities for public comment.

Contact: Jessica Sena, 590-8675

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