Natural gas flares illuminate Western North Dakota.
Harnessing that energy is not a new conversation but the reality of a natural gas pipeline is now backed by a major player in the Bakken region.
Enbridge owns a fifty percent interest in the Alliance Pipeline which currently runs from Northern Alberta and British Columbia to the Chicago natural gas market.
The underground Alliance Pipeline delivers more than 1.6 billion cubic feet per day of rich, high-energy natural gas --- which includes ethane, propane, and butane mixed in.
Enbridge Liquid Pipelines President Steve Wuori says the company is working on pipelines to move more natural gas out of the Bakken region.
The product would be moved to a large fractionating plant in Chicago where the gas would be sold to local Chicago utility companies --- and the liquid gas that is separated would be sold to the active market.
(Steve Wuori, President, Liquid Pipelines, Enbridge) "We really believe in that and we're going to keep pursuing that with the Alliance Pipeline. More connections beyond the Prairie Rose connection we have to the Stanley gas plant, and the Tioga plant that we have a connection to, we're going to keep moving beyond that. And we have other ideas that we're pursuing that will ultimately result in more rich gas being gathered in North Dakota so we can reduce the amount of flaring that goes on."
A Ceres report in July says flaring in the Bakken has tripled in the past three years and could be as much as $100 million dollars a month worth of natural gas being flared.