Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - July 20, 2018.  


Trump now wants Putin to visit the White House this fall; Also on the Friday rundown: health insurance rates to rise by almost 9 percent in California; and as the climate crises reaches “Zero Hour” young people take a stand.

Daily Newscasts

ND Tax Dollars Up in Flames? Feds Look to Limit Gas Flaring

U.S. taxpayers have lost an estimated $380 million since 2006 because of flaring and venting of natural gas at drilling sites on federal lands. Credit: sakakawea7.
U.S. taxpayers have lost an estimated $380 million since 2006 because of flaring and venting of natural gas at drilling sites on federal lands. Credit: sakakawea7.
August 28, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. - North Dakota's U.S. senators are being urged to support efforts to have the federal government take action to end the waste of natural gas at drilling sites on public lands and the loss of the associated revenue.

An ad campaign launched this week in North Dakota and several other states calls on lawmakers to ensure that the Bureau of Land Management adopts common-sense rules to limit flaring, venting and leaks. The industry calls that loss of natural gas unavoidable, but Michael Surrusco, senior policy analyst with Taxpayers for Common Sense, said the standards on which that view is based were put in place in the 1970s.

"Technology has advanced significantly since then," he said. "There's really no reason they can't use the existing technologies to capture and sell a lot of gas that's being lost now."

Since 2006, Surrusco said, American taxpayers have lost more than $380 million in royalties because of wasteful practices by oil and gas companies on public lands. The proposed new rules from the Bureau of Land Management are expected later this fall.

North Dakota already has started to make some progress locally on the issue, but "when you compare us to other states and what they have in place, we're really lenient when it comes to our rules," said state Rep. Kenton Onstad, D-Parshall. "It's just a terrible waste, and we need to correct that."

North Dakota approved new flaring standards last year, with the goal of having drillers capture 90 percent of all the gas they release by October 2020.

More information on the ad campaign is online at taxpayer.net. North Dakota's gas-flaring policy is at dmr.nd.gov.

John Michaelson, Public News Service - ND