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Cheap gas spurs SUV sales and puts U.S. climate goals at risk

A car is filled with gasoline at a gas station pump in Carlsbad, California August 4, 2015. REUTERS/Mike Blake

WASHINGTON/DETROIT – Surging demand for trucks and SUVs fueled by cheap gasoline is holding back improvements in U.S. fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions, a government report due out on Wednesday is expected to show. The disconnect between consumer demand for larger, less efficient vehicles and the Obama administration’s climate goals sets up a clash between the auto industry and ...

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$5.4M in enrollment growth grants doled out to ND schools

property tax reform

BISMARCK, N.D. — Thirty-five school districts in North Dakota have received a total of $5.4 million in grants to help them cope with unusually high enrollment growth. The Legislature earlier this year set aside nearly $15 million in the Department of Public Instruction’s two-year budget for the grants. State School Superintendent Kirsten Baesler announced the first grants Monday. “The way ...

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Project’s transmission towers will be built in Webster

Much of the work to build a high-voltage transmission line between the Big Stone power plant and Ellenedale, N.D., will be done in Webster. That means a boost for the Day County seat and the surrounding area, local officials said. Otter Tail Power and Montana-Dakota Utilities are building the 162-mile transmission line, and recently announced that the project’s 90-acre laydown ...

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EPA approves water quality rules for Montana, tribe

EPA approves water quality rules for Montana, tribe

BILLINGS, Mont. — Federal environmental regulators have approved water quality rules meant to protect southeastern Montana cropland from wastewater produced during natural gas drilling. They had been opposed by energy companies and officials in neighboring Wyoming. The rules limit how much salty water that is a byproduct of drilling can enter the Tongue and Powder River basins along the Montana-Wyoming ...

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Protesters charges with trespassing at Enbridge’s Duluth offices appear in court

Four of the seven environmental activists charged with trespassing in the Duluth offices of Enbridge Energy last month while protesting proposed oil pipelines across northern Minnesota appeared in court Tuesday. The protesters refused to leave the oil pipeline company’s offices at the downtown Tech Village building on Superior Street and were arrested, booked into jail and quickly released Nov. 2. ...

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MDU Resources Group lays off workers, cuts other positions

BISMARCK, N.D. — MDU Resources Group Inc. has laid off seven employees in its Bismarck corporate office after the sale of its oil company. MDU, a diversified natural resource company traded on the New York Stock Exchange, announced the sale of its Fidelity Exploration and Production properties in November to generate capital to fund investments at its other subsidiaries. The ...

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Western states’ battle over coal royalties spills into House

The Western states’ battle over royalties that companies pay for coal, oil and gas taken from public lands spilled into Congress on Tuesday, where lawmakers and witnesses from Montana and Wyoming squared off. Former Montana Department of Revenue Director Dan Bucks told the House Natural Resources Committee that more needed to be done to ensure the public was getting its ...

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