Energy

7:53 am
Fri January 31, 2014

Keystone Report Said Likely To Disappoint Foes On Climate

Lead in text: 
Bloomberg News reports the State Department's document on the pipeline will "likely disappoint" opponents of the Keystone XL. Several people familiar with the report have told Bloomberg News the study will say that the pipeline will have only a minimal affect on carbon emissions. President Obama has said he would take the report's conclusion on the Keystone XL's impact on climate change while deciding whether to allow construction. Once the State Department is released, it kicks off another review for the President focused on whether the pipeline is in the U-S national interest.
The U.S. State Department is preparing a report that will probably disappoint environmentalists and opponents of the Keystone pipeline, according to people who have been briefed on the draft of the document.
The Great Plains Oil Rush
1:59 am
Fri January 31, 2014

Commuting To Distant Oil Fields: Good Money, At A Price

The small streets of Williston, N.D., are bustling with trucks early in the morning.
Annie Flanagan for NPR

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 12:26 pm

Think your commute is bad? Try 580 miles, one-way.

Door to door, that's how far Rory Richardson travels between his home in western Montana and his job on the oil fields near Williston, N.D. Often, he makes the trip on a plane his company charters to shuttle workers between here and the Northwest.

"It's no fun coming over to North Dakota," he says, clutching a duffel bag and a cooler of food as he walks out of Williston's one-room airport and into the biting North Dakota winter.

But this is Richardson's new life.

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The Great Plains Oil Rush
5:18 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

One Montana Town Finds Itself Buckling Beneath The Oil Boom

Originally published on Fri January 31, 2014 8:28 am

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

The economy of eastern Montana is surging and oil and gas development is the driver. Last year alone, the oil industry brought in $200 million in tax revenue to state and local governments. Unemployment in counties near the oil fields is well below the state average. This week, we're reporting on effects of the fracking boom in the region known as the Bakken. And today, Montana Public Radio's Dan Boyce tells us that that activity comes with a cost.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
12:48 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

Oklahoma Attorney General Asks U.S. Supreme Court To Review Air Pollution Ruling

The Grand River Dam Authority's coal-fired plant in Chouteau, Okla., which is impacted by the Regional Haze Rule.
Credit Logan Layden / StateImpact Oklahoma

State Attorney General Scott Pruitt and Oklahoma’s largest utility company, OG&E,have been fighting the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Regional Haze Rule since the federal agency rejected Oklahoma’s plan to reduce sulfur dioxide pollution at its coal-fired power plants in 2011.

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The Great Plains Oil Rush
2:27 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Much Of North Dakota's Natural Gas Is Going Up In Flames

Gas flaring near Highway 85 southwest of Williston. Analysts estimate that almost 30 percent of the gas being produced in the state is burned off.
Jeff Brady/NPR

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 10:44 am

A remarkable transformation is underway in western North Dakota, where an oil boom is changing the state's fortunes and leaving once-sleepy towns bursting at the seams. In a series of stories, NPR is exploring the economic, social and environmental demands of this modern-day gold rush.

North Dakota's oil boom isn't just about oil; a lot of natural gas comes out of the ground at the same time. But there's a problem with that: The state doesn't have the pipelines needed to transport all of that gas to market. There's also no place to store it.

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The Great Plains Oil Rush
4:16 pm
Wed January 29, 2014

Oil Rush A Cash Cow For Some Farmers, But Tensions Crop Up

A drilling site rises from the middle of farmland near Fairfield, N.D. Many farmers and ranchers are profiting from the state's oil boom, but others complain that drillers are interfering with their business.
Jeff Brady NPR

Originally published on Thu January 30, 2014 10:00 am

A remarkable transformation is underway in western North Dakota, where an oil boom is changing the state's fortunes and leaving once-sleepy towns bursting at the seams. In a series of stories, NPR is exploring the economic, social and environmental demands of this modern-day gold rush.

Donny Nelson is a third-generation farmer and rancher near Keene, N.D., a rural community located in the center of an oil rush.

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Business
4:17 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Cold Temperatures Boost Demand For Natural Gas

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 11:49 am

Transcript

STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

President Obama used the State of the Union speech to talk up the state of the domestic fuel industry.

(SOUNDBITE OF SPEECH)

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Today, America is closer to energy independence than we have been in decades. One of the reasons why is natural gas.

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Around the Nation
1:54 am
Wed January 29, 2014

On The Plains, The Rush For Oil Has Changed Everything

Diners at Lonnie's Roadhouse Cafe eat breakfast before heading to work in Williston, N.D.
Annie Flanagan for NPR

Originally published on Wed January 29, 2014 11:49 am

A remarkable transformation is underway in western North Dakota, where an oil boom is changing the state's fortunes and leaving once-sleepy towns bursting at the seams. In a series of stories, NPR is exploring the economic, social and environmental demands of this modern-day gold rush.

On a Sunday at dusk, Amtrak's eastbound Empire Builder train is jampacked, filled with people heading to their jobs in North Dakota towns like Minot, Williston and Watford City.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
3:27 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Deal Struck to Avoid New Border Dispute Between Oklahoma And Texas

Credit James Rintamaki / Flickr Creative Commons

Determining exactly where the border between Oklahoma and Texas is along the Red River has been a touchy subject for more than a century.

And when it was discovered that one of the pumps that provides water to the North Texas Municipal Water District was actually it Oklahoma, it was shut down, as Texas Gov. Rick Perry called for negotiations.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
7:32 am
Tue January 28, 2014

Lake Texoma Residents Say They Don’t Want To Hoard Water, But Feel Ignored

Lake Texoma's Denison Dam.
Credit Robert Nunnally / Flickr Creative Commons

Lake Texoma is really feeling the effects of the ongoing drought. Water levels have been dropping, many boat ramps lead to dirt, and some slips are grounded.

That reduces the number of people using the lake for recreation, and hurts the economy of a part of Oklahoma very much dependent on tourism.

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