WILLISTON, N.D. – Senator John Hoeven (R-N.D.) today hosted Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) for a visit to Western North Dakota’s oil patch to show how the state is advancing oil and gas development in the region, as well as to underscore the community’s infrastructure needs. Hoeven said he wants to enlist her support for continued energy development and to address the infrastructure challenges communities are facing as a result.
“North Dakota has created a dynamic energy industry across all sectors by building a business climate that draws investment from around the country and around the world,” Hoeven said. “We’re creating jobs and growing our economy with good policy and the nation can, too. We need to work in a bipartisan way to advance that kind of energy policy for our country and ensure that we’re building the kind of infrastructure that will result in greater national energy security, a growing economy and more jobs. We also need to make more supply available to help reduce fuel prices at the pump for American consumers. I’m pleased to have Senator Klobuchar here in oil country today.”
“The strength of our nation is tied to the strength of our energy economy,” Klobuchar said. “It is great to see the work North Dakota is doing to promote the production of domestic fuels. Now is the time for us to increase domestic production of energy and focus on the homegrown energy solutions that will not only give consumers relief at pump; they will strengthen our economy and decrease our dependence on foreign oil.”
Hoeven and Klobuchar are sponsoring the bipartisan Domestic Fuels Act of 2012. The Domestic Fuels Act takes a market-based, no-cost approach, driven by supply and demand, to make it easier to market all fuels and give consumers more choice at the pump.
- Williston Ground Tour: The senators began the visit with a ground tour of Williston, which is now the fastest growing small metropolitan area in the country, according to new census estimates. The tour underscored the rapid growth of the city and the infrastructure needs growth is generating, including roads, housing, sewer, and transmission lines. To illustrate the demand for housing, the ground tour segment concluded with a stop at Williston Garden Apartments, a new 145 unit housing complex. The first of the four buildings in the complex was completed on April 1, and was fully occupied the first day units became available.
- Oil Rig Review and Horizontal Drilling Demonstration: The ground tour was followed by a demonstration at an oil rig operated by Nomac 316, a subsidiary of Statoil, Norway’s largest petroleum company. The stop also featured a demonstration of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing by Kathleen Neset, a geologist who manages geological service crews throughout the Bakken and Northern Rockies region.
- Hess Corporation Tour: The senators concluded the day’s events with a visit to the Hess Corporation’s natural gas processing facility in Tioga, which is developing new technologies the company believes, will increase production in the Bakken and may be applicable elsewhere in the world. Hess is the third largest oil producer and the largest natural gas producer in the state.
Total production in North Dakota’s oil patch has more than doubled in the past two years, according to the state’s Division of Mineral Resources. The state is now the third largest oil and gas producing state in the country.