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BFEG members gather to discuss energy development issues at a regular meeting held recently in Dickinson, N.D.
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| ||BLM Montana/Dakotas State Director Jamie Connell discusses energy development with members of industry during a visit to a well site near Mandaree, N.D.|
Bakken Federal Executives Group Meets in Dickinson
BLM Montana/Dakotas State Director Jamie Connell and Associate State Director Katherine Kitchell and other members of the Bakken Federal Executives Group met June 19 in Dickinson, N.D., as part of their strategy to address issues related to energy development in the region.
The Bakken Federal Executives Group, or BFEG, is comprised of regional-level Federal executives with resource interests in the Bakken area. They meet periodically to exchange information, identify issues, and seek solutions to common ongoing and emerging challenges associated with the North Dakota energy boom.
The BFEG met in Dickinson and discussed a variety of topics including issues related to pay and human resources; streamlining permitting; the Baseline Environmental Status and Trends (BEST) project; an update on pipeline projects in the Bakken, and a NPS Sensitive Area Mapping presentation. The group had briefings from Lynn Helms, North Dakota Industrial Commission Director, on the State of North Dakota’s permit review policy and their gas capture plan policy, as well as an update from Three Affiliated Tribes Council Member, Ken Hall. Then the group spent a day in the field and traveled north to the Fort Berthold Reservation where they visited a single well pad with drilling, production and well completion activities all taking place on one well pad, located near Mandaree.
Participating agencies in the BFEG include: the Bureau of Land Management; Bureau of Indian Affairs; Office of Indian Economic and Energy Development; the Bureau of Reclamation; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; the National Park Service; the U. S. Geological Survey; the Office of Natural Resources Revenue; Office of Special Trustee; the Farm Services Agency; the Environmental Protection Agency; the USDA Forest Service; the Natural Resource Conservation Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
As interagency partners, the BFEG is committed to working together to find creative solutions and to develop opportunities to increase efficiency within existing budgets and authorities. Others who attended included representatives from Senator Heidi Heitkamp and Senator John Hoeven’s offices in North Dakota, as well as Senator John Walsh’s office from Montana. The Fort Peck Tribe was also represented.
Story by Mark E. Jacobsen
Public Affairs Officer
Eastern Montana/Dakotas District
Photos by: Diane Friez, Eastern Montana/Dakotas District Manager