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ND to require natural gas capturing plans

Natural Gas flaring
Natural Gas flaring

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) -- The North Dakota Industrial Commission will require oil companies to submit a plan to capture natural gas before a well can be drilled. The commission regulates oil and gas development in the state. Natural gas is a byproduct of oil production but gas pipelines and processing facilities haven't kept pace with oil drilling. North Dakota drillers currently burn off, or flare, more than 30 percent of the valuable gas compared to the national average of less than 1 percent. A group representing hundreds of companies working in North Dakota's oil patch told state regulators on last month that it expects the industry to be capturing 85 percent of the gas by 2016, and 90 percent within six years.

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