Drilling DisputePosted: Jan 24, 2013 8:42 PM CST
The North Dakota Industrial Commission has decided to wait to make a decision on where permitted wells should be drilled near the Killdeer Mountains.
A hearing was held today on Hess Corp plans to drill wells in that location.
Residents from that area along with those interested in the land's history and habitat have opposed the wells saying they are too close to the Killdeer Mountains, Medicine Hole and near eagle nesting areas.
The North Dakota Department of Minerals has been examining and looking at different sceneries.
Director, Lynn Helms, presented six alternatives to the commission.
He says rugged terrain and nearby homes make it difficult to move the proposed well site.
Helms says doing nothing would leave 3 million barrels of oil stranded - that has a value of $250 million.
He proposes an approving Hess' application that would permit eight wells with stipulations.
<<(Lynn Helms / Dir. of Mineral Resources) "Two small pads with activity spread out will have the minimal amount of impact and also allows us to accomplish our statutory mission of preventing waste and protecting rights.">>
Several members of a group opposing the well sites explained why they don't support the oil development in that specific spot.
<< (Loren Jepson / Resident ) "That's all I'm looking for is to get these wells away from where everybody is living, we are going to live there for the rest of our lives."
"To leave it in the ground, is not to waste it. They're gonna be after it in the future, what's the rush? "
( Dr. Marguerite Coyle / Eagle Researcher) What is the price to habitat? Do we also have a price on the archaeological artifacts and what the impact would be? Do we have a price on that? You can not buy them back. They are not replaceable.">>