Energy & Industry 2017

Kim Fundingsland/MDN

The massive dragline that removes earth above veins of lignite coal at the Falkirk Mine near Underwood operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It began operation in 1980.

North Dakota lignite then and now

UNDERWOOD – Coal and coal mining has been an important part of North Dakota history since the time of the first settlers arriving in the region. One of the earliest known efforts to lay claim to a lignite coal vein occurred in Dakota Territory in 1873, scarcely a year after the town of ...

Jill Schramm/MDN 
Erika Kelly, interior designer with Souris River Designs, visits with a visitor to the Home and Garden Show in Minot March 4. Builders and home companies were at the show to show what’s available for 2017.

Home designs cater to easy living

Homeowners crave “living spaces,” and homebuilders are catering to their wishes with home designs that are lifestyle-friendly. Minot builders, remodelers and designers agree that clients are wanting homes that are livable, organized and efficient. People are looking for open concepts and ...

Source: Minot Housing Supply and Demand Analysis Update

Construction boosts Minot’s housing inventory

Minot’s housing stock has more inventory and is weighted somewhat more heavily toward multi-family apartments than it was six years ago. A housing study released by the City of Minot in March found the number of housing units increased by 29 percent, from 15,854 to 20,394, from 2010 through ...

Submitted Photo
From the left, Jessie Veeder, singer and writer from Watford City; Trey Wilson, chairman, CEO and president of MBI Energy Services; and Scott Hennen, host of the “What’s On your Mind?” radio show are shown at Energy Day held in Bismarck, March 7 . Energy leaders including Oneok, National Federal of Independent Business, Bakken Backers, Consumer Energy Alliance and North Dakota Petroleum Council were sponsors.

Economic output from oil & gas in ND remains strong despite downturn

BISMARCK – The petroleum industry’s economic contributions remained strong in 2015 despite struggling commodity prices, according to the preliminary findings of a study being conducted by the North Dakota State University’s Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics. The study was ...

Submitted Photo

Lynn Helms, 
director of the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources, said, “Operators are shifting from running the minimum number of rigs to incremental increases throughout 2017 as long as oil prices remain between $50 a barrel and $60 a barrel West Texas Intermediate.”

North Dakota’s oil production remains high

North Dakota’s oil production grew from 235,925 barrels of oil a day in January 2010 to an all-time high of 1.23 million barrels of oil a day in December 2014. Although the state’s oil industry as well as the entire petroleum industry has gone through a decline in production as a result ...

This graphic shows North Dakota exports with and without oil from 2000-2016.

Most ND oil, oil-related products go to Canada

FARGO – Nearly all of North Dakota’s oil and oil-related products go to Canada, according to the head of the U.S. Commercial Office in Fargo. “99.5 percent of North Dakota’s oil-related products went to Canada and 88 percent of this was crude, with the rest being other oil-related ...

Submitted Photo
Alison Ritter, public information officer for the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources, said rig efficiency is one of the major changes in the oil industry.

Rig efficiency, spacing, DUCs

When the Bakken, the newest oil boom in North Dakota named for the lucrative oil formation called the Bakken, began depends on who you ask, said Alison Ritter, public information officer for the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources in Bismarck. Ritter laid out a timeline of the ...

Electric co-ops serve North Dakota

North Dakota’s system of 16 distribution cooperatives brings electricity to 250,000 state residents. It is an astounding success story. Electric cooperatives were formed for the purpose of providing rural customers with electricity in a reliable and affordable fashion. More and more ...

Submitted Photo

SkySkopes Chief Instructor Pilot 
Cory Vinger 
flies a drone during a 
January power line inspection near Wilton.

Not just for the military anymore

Minot is getting an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of a burgeoning industry with an announcement by SkySkopes last December that it is expanding its unmanned aircraft operation to the city. The company has received a great reception from companies in the Bakken that could benefit ...

Submitted Photo

Canadian Pacific Railway officials said 2016 was “burdened with stiff economic headwinds and a challenging volume environment, the strength of the model was tested and proven.” The railway is looking ahead to a better year in 2017, including project work planned in North Dakota. Photo provided by CP Rail.

BNSF, CP meet demands for freight service

Major freight trains serving the Minot area faced a challenging economic environment last year but are looking forward to continuing to meet demands for freight service and future growth. BNSF and Canadian Pacific Railway serve the area. “BNSF Railway’s total volume across our network ...

Kim Fundingsland/MDN
Shown here is the Garrison Dam Power Plant and the large surge tanks located adjacent to it.

Clean, efficient hydroelectric power

RIVERDALE – The size of the machinery is unmatched in North Dakota. The electrical power generated is vital to many areas of the United States. The reliability is as good as it gets. The Garrison Dam Power Plant is a very impressive facility. Five massive turbines powered by water flowing ...

File Photo
Workers make progress in the construction of the Ward County jail expansion Feb. 8.

Times continue to change in commercial construction

Commercial construction activity can be cyclical, and the Minot region is seeing that cycle change as it comes off boom times to settle into a slower pace. But that makes it a good time for businesses thinking about projects to take a serious look, said Jason Sanders, president of Rolac ...