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Top 5 Bakken stories of the week

Here are the top five stories from Bakken.com for the week of August 22nd through the 28th. Enjoy!

5. Ex-well operator in North Dakota indicted in dumping case

Injection well used to dispose of oil field wastewater. (Image: Faces of Fracking via Flickr)

Injection well used to dispose of oil field wastewater. (Image: Faces of Fracking via Flickr)

The former operator of a saltwater well in southwest North Dakota linked to an illegal wastewater dumping case pleaded not guilty to multiple felony charges Monday in federal court in Bismarck.

A federal indictment charges Jason Halek, of Southlake, Texas, with conspiring with others in a number of illegal acts including injecting saltwater — an unwanted byproduct of oil production — into a disposal well near Dickinson without first having North Dakota inspectors witness a test of the well’s integrity and continuing to inject the fluid after a failed pressure test. Halek entered not guilty pleas to all charges including violating the Safe Drinking Water Act, making false statements and obstructing grand jury proceedings. To read the full article, click here.

4. Oil prices likely to stay low following market correction, Billings experts say

Image: Tim Whitlow via Flickr

Image: Tim Whitlow via Flickr

Local industry and investment experts said Monday they expect continued struggles for the oil and gas industry following sub-$40-a-barrel prices and big drops in Wall Street stocks across the board.

Prices of sweet crude fell to their lowest in 6 1/2 years, dropping to around $38 a barrel on some exchanges.

The industry has struggled with a worldwide supply glut since October, but news of a slowing Chinese economy is worrying some investors about a drop in consumer commodity demand. To read the full article, click here.

3. Iran says an OPEC emergency meeting may stop oil price slide – Shana

Photo: Reuters via Newscred

Photo: Reuters via Newscred

DUBAI – Iran’s Oil Minister, Bijan Zanganeh, said on Sunday that holding an emergency OPEC meeting may be “effective” in stabilizing the oil price, Iran’s oil ministry news agency Shana reported.

Algeria said earlier this month that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries could hold an emergency meeting to discuss the drop in oil prices but other OPEC delegates said no meeting was planned.

“Iran endorses an emergency OPEC meeting and would not disagree with it,” Zanganeh told reporters in Tehran, according to Shana. To read the full article, click here.

2. Oil soars over 10 percent, biggest gain in six years as shorts scramble

An oil well pump jack is seen at an oil field supply yard near Denver, Colorado February 2, 2015. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

An oil well pump jack is seen at an oil field supply yard near Denver, Colorado February 2, 2015. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

NEW YORK – Oil rocketed more than 10 percent higher on Thursday, posting its biggest one-day rally in over six years as recovering equity markets and news of diminished crude supplies set off a short-covering scramble by bearish traders.

Snapping back from a deep two-month slump that knocked U.S. crude to 6-1/2 year lows below $40 this week, oil climbed as world stock markets rose on hopes Chinese government measures to stimulate the economy would pay off, while the dollar strengthened as risk aversion eased. To read the full article, click here.

1. No more Bakken crude: Canada’s largest refinery heads overseas for supply

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Bakken Shale oil produced in the U.S. is no longer being shipped to Canada for use in the nation’s largest crude oil refinery, reports the Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Rather than importing Bakken shale oil from the U.S., the refinery’s operator, Irving Oil LTD, has opted to use more inexpensive crudes from producers such as Saudi Arabia. The change is the latest indicator of shifting crude costs, which are affecting East Coast refiners as the global oil price slump persists.

As reported by the WSJ, the refinery located in Saint John, New Brunswick, and one of the largest by volume refineries in North America, will be feeding zero barrels of Bakken crude into its 320,000-barrel-per-day refining capacity. Irving President Ian Whitcomb told the WSJ that purchases of Bakken crude shipped by rail have been reduced from a high of roughly 100,000 barrels a day two years ago to zero. He said, “We’re not importing any Bakken crude right now.” To read the full article, click here.

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