Congressional Staffers Inspect Bakken - - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Congressional Staffers Inspect Bakken

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15 state and national congressional staffers spent time this week, inspecting the Bakken region to find out how North Dakota's natural resources can impact public policy.

Bonnie Campo caught up with the group near at Capital Lodge, near Tioga, to find out what they are learning.

The oil boom continues to generate national publicity for North Dakota, even in congress. That's one of the reasons the U.S. Geological Survey and congressional staffers are exploring the state with a hands on approach.

(Leon Carl, Regional Midwest Director of the U.S. Geological Survey) "We just came out of a couple oil drilling sites. One was actually drilling oil for the oil, and putting down the pipe. The second was the actually fracking operation where they're actually able to bring the oil back up."

The U.S. Geological Survey studies the impact of the operations, and after submitting those findings they become essential to congressmen and women.

(Dave Ozman, Chief of Communication for the U.S. Geological Survey) "They are very interested in the science that we do. U.S. G.S. is a science agency, we are a non-regulatory. We go in and do the science and then we provide it to members of congress."

After their oil rig exploration, they convened back at Capital Lodge. But, why to a man camp? Well, it explains how North Dakota how North Dakota can house all the new workers close to their job sites. Capitol Lodge can house 1,200 employees.

(Richard Buckman, Capital Director of Sales) "We were involved because the North Dakota Petroleum Council called us, and asked us would we provide lunch and a tour because they wanted to see a crew lodge. We are kinda proud of our crew lodge and think it's one of the best in the state."

The group isn't staying put for long. Over the next four days, they will venture to other impacted areas in the state.

(Leon Carl, Regional Midwest Director of the U.S. Geological Survey) "We are also going to be going east and looking at some of the ecosystem, and also some of the water issues that occur. We're very focused on what our partners need and what the people in the state of North Dakota would need in terms of our science. It would help them, in managing the resources that you have in this fantastic state."

Their trip will end Friday in Fargo. Reporting from the Bakken, Bonnie Campo KX News.


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