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  • Opinion: N.D. residents should learn how oil, gas industry worksJuly 13, 2015

    Safety in the oil industry is a pivotal concern and responsible, conscious operators extend this concern to internal and public controls.

    Recent findings by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency stated that hydraulic-fracturing techniques (fracking) pose no inherent risk to the public and the environment, including groundwater. This came as no surprise to those who understand the process and regulations implemented in the industry.

    In North Dakota, the oil and gas industry adheres to a stringent well design that protects our groundwater from being contaminated. After a well is drilled, at least four layers of combined concrete and steel lay between the well bore and the earth. This includes at least two layers of steel and two layers of concrete. With multiple layers and scheduled integrity testing of the well, groundwater is protected from any vulnerability that may develop.

    The oil and gas industry is an advanced, complicated industry. It is vital for the transport and production of nearly every product and service we consume. Petroleum is in our homes, automobiles, offices and clothing. I invite you to take the time to learn more about the industry and how it works.

    Whether you live in Fargo or Watford City, N.D., the industry is holding events near you that include the opportunity to learn more. Cookfest will be held July 14 in Alexander, N.D., and July 16 in South Heart, N.D., and industry leaders Ron Ness, Kathy Neset and Lynn Helms will present education sessions at 2:30 p.m. that are free to the public. They will also present education sessions at the North Dakota Petroleum Council’s annual meeting Sept. 21 in Fargo.

    I encourage everyone to attend and learn how the industry operates and how North Dakota’s oil and gas industry is changing America’s future. To find more upcoming events, visit www.ndoil.org.

    As printed in the Jamestown Sun on July 13, 2015.