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300 landowners and state officials met in Stanley for the Northwest Landowners Association expo and discussed the new state pipeline program.
300 landowners and state officials met in Stanley for the Northwest Landowners Association expo and discussed the new state pipeline program.

Northwest Landowners Association addresses pipeline issues

Kevin Connors, pipeline program supervisor for the Department of Mineral Resources, claims his goal is that large pipeline spills will be a thing of the past, reports AgWeek.

300 Landowners as well as state officials and oil company representatives met in Stanley for a Northwest Landowners Association expo where Connors outlined the new state pipeline program.

New rules will take effect next January. These regulations will include better pipeline installation and an increase of third-party inspections.

Connors said, “Making sure these pipeline are installed properly is better than any leak detection technology out there.” Reducing small spills and eliminating large spills through proper installation in addition to monitoring, leak detection and effective spill response is a main goal of the pipeline program.

Troy Coons, chairman of the Northwest Landowners Association, acknowledges the improvements that state agencies and oil companies have in regards to response to landowner issues, but challenges there are still more changes that need to take place.

Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem wants to balance between welcoming the oil industry and the growth that it brings with enforcing them to follow rules and leave the state in a condition equal to or better than when they entered.

According to Julie Fedorchak, Public Service Commission Chairwoman, the problem often is that the company did not know of a landowner issue, and as soon as the issue is brought to their attention the companies are willing to fix their mistakes.

Come January, as new regulations are implemented, the number of problems that need fixing should decrease and landowners will have less to worry about.

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