Oil and gas industry leaders, as well as lawmakers, are gathered in Watford City for the North Dakota Petroleum Council’s annual meeting. Speakers on Wednesday included MHA Nation Chairman Mark Fox, Former US Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, and Governor Doug Burgum.
The focus of Governor Burgum’s speech was centered around energy production, here in North Dakota. The Governor discussed how the Biden Administration’s Executive Order to ban drilling on all Federal Land has hindered progress, here in the state. Burgum says there are other policies that create roadblocks for North Dakota and the ability to establish domestic energy independence. Burgum went on to say that Washington regulators should not be implementing a one size fits all regulation in North Dakota.
Burgum insists Federal land here looks a lot different than it does in remote, pristine federal wilderness areas like Montana and Alaska. He says he calls our state, a checkerboard land ownership system.
“In North Dakota, we also have a separate estate, so the landowner can be different from the mineral owner. So, if the Bakken is ten thousand feet below where most of the oil is coming from, the surface owner up until 1930 might have been a North Dakota rancher. Now it’s the federal government, that rancher still owns the minerals underneath, so the ban is effecting over 1/3rd of the spacing units in North Dakota,” says North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum.
Governor Burgum also says that his mantra is “innovation not regulation” when dealing with oil & gas.
He says he plans to use that mindset to open North Dakota up as a regional carbon capture and storage hub which will work to meet Burgum’s goal of making the state carbon neutral by 2030.