Kiwanis Club hosts Talkin the Bakken

Rob Lindberg and Kathy Neset, above, want North Dakotans to help keep the Bakken strong and healthy.

Rob Lindberg and Kathy Neset want North Dakotans to help keep the Bakken strong and healthy.

Neset is a geologist who’s also president of her own consulting service. Lindberg is director of Bakken Backers, a coalition of citizens, workers, businesses and leaders who support the region and its benefits to North Dakota. Both spoke to the Kiwanis Club of Wahpeton-Breckenridge Wednesday, Oct. 4 in Wahpeton.

“With more than 72,350 director and secondary jobs and $34.25 billion of activity in 2015, the North Dakota oil and gas industry makes up 20 percent of jobs and 30 percent of total wages in the state’s private sector,” Lindberg said, sharing information from a North Dakota State University study.

According to the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources, Lindberg continued, oil and gas employment could grow to more than 130,000 jobs before 2040.

The Bakken joins two Texas formations, the Eagle Ford and Permian Basin, as the most developed American shale oil formations.

“These three formations are among a select group of only 10 formations in the world to ever produce 1 million barrels of oil per day,” Lindberg said.

Neset’s presentation was technology-based, including a vial of crude oil extracted from the region. She also exhibited “Bakken shale,” as well as other oil-containing formations buried in the region.

“Technology now can only extract 8 percent of the oil in this rock,” Neset said to the Wahpeton audience.

After the meeting, Neset said it was absolutely pivotal for audiences to see the tight rock that oil can come from. She was impressed by how engaged the Wahpeton audience was, particularly the amount of questions it asked.

“We work primarily in North Dakota, doing between 12-15 presentations a year,” Neset continued. “Next week, Rob and I will be in Bismarck.”

Bakken Backers’ mission, Lindberg continued, is to positively promote Bakken communities and support legislation that provides the funding mechanisms they need to grow.

“(We fight) for responsible regulation that protects our environment and keeps the industry growing in North Dakota,” stated a postcard available at the meeting. “Anti-energy activists post 20 times more on Twitter (according to a 2014 report).”

According to Lindberg and Neset, each well produces 678,000 barrels of oil. As of March 2017, there are 13,632 wells, with 65,000 wells planned for the Bakken.

“Each Bakken well is expected to produce oil for 45 years,” Lindberg said.

For more information, visit Bakken Backers on Facebook or Twitter, email or call or text 701-354-2710.

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