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    Bakken gas pipeline gets federal nod

Summary

A North Dakota pipeline will deliver natural gas associated with shale oil production.

by: Daniel Graeber

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Bakken gas pipeline gets federal nod

A pipeline subsidiary of MDU Resources said June 3 it had secured federal approvals for a pipeline expansion project meant to deliver associated gas from the Bakken shale formation in North Dakota.

The subsidiary, WBI Energy, received a certificate of convenience and necessity from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) for its North Bakken Expansion project, which could deliver as much as 250mn ft3/d of natural gas from the Bakken shale.

"Pipelines remain the safest way to move natural gas around the country, and this project is vital to capturing natural gas that is produced  and currently flared  as an associated product of oil production in the Bakken,” MDU Resources CEO David L. Goodin said.

In 2014, the state government in North Dakota implemented natural gas capture goals to limit the amount of associated gas flared during crude oil production. In March, the state pipeline authority said that 94% of the associated gas was captured and sold.

Though primarily an oil producer, the US Energy Information Administration estimates Bakken gas production will average about 2.7bn ft3/d in June.

The expansion project includes 62 miles of 24-inch pipe and 20 miles of 12-inch line. The total cost is estimated at $260mn. MDU said it expects to have the line completed and in service by the end of the year.