Wednesday, August 7, 2019 - 01:45 pm

BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Doug Burgum today led a delegation of state officials and legislative leaders on a tour of petrochemical facilities in the Canadian province of Alberta as part of ongoing efforts to bring the petrochemical industry to North Dakota to add value to the state’s ample natural gas resources and grow the economy.

The group consisting of Burgum, Senate Majority Leader Rich Wardner, House Majority Leader Chet Pollert, Commerce Commissioner Michelle Kommer, Bank of North Dakota President Eric Hardmeyer, Department of Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms and Commerce Deputy Commissioner Shawn Kessel toured petrochemical facilities in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland and met with industry officials to learn more about the opportunities, workforce needs and economic impacts associated with the industry.

“North Dakota has abundant, rich natural gas that could be processed right here in our state to create jobs, diversify the economy and grow wealth in our communities,” Burgum said. “Gaining a better understanding of how Alberta developed its petrochemical industry will help us choose the right path for processing North Dakota gas at home. Bringing this industry to our state will allow oil producers to fully implement their drilling and production investments while also helping us solve the flared gas issue that continues to limit the Bakken’s growth. We’re grateful to our Canadian hosts for sharing their knowledge and expertise in this high-potential area.”

The Department of Commerce estimates that primary and secondary refinement of North Dakota’s rich natural gas could draw more than $9 billion in capital investment while providing hundreds of good-paying jobs and generating additional tax and royalty revenue.

In June, Commerce announced a $100,000 investment in Bakken Midstream Natural Gas LLC through the North Dakota Development Fund, as well as a $100,000 investment from the New Venture Capital Program through the Bank of North Dakota. The investment aims to advance in-state development of natural gas-related industries and establish a path toward significantly reducing natural gas flaring. Bakken Midstream’s mission is to develop and own infrastructure that will make North Dakota a world-class leader in value-added natural gas products.