Energy secretary to tour N.D. sites

WASHINGTON – U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz will tour Dakota Gasification in Beulah and oil and gas sites in Tioga while visiting North Dakota next week, U.S. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp announced Thursday.

Moniz and U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx will be participating in a U.S. Department of Energy policy meeting at Bismarck State College on Aug 8.

After the meeting, which is part of President Obama’s Quadrennial Energy Review, Heitkamp plans to host Moniz on a tour of the Great Plains Synfuels Plant in Beulah.

On Aug. 9, Hess Corp. will host Moniz on a tour of the Tioga Gas Plant, a drilling rig and a hydraulic fracturing site, Heitkamp said.

It will be the first trip to North Dakota for Moniz, Heitkamp said.

“We’re really excited to show off what we’re doing in North Dakota,” Heitkamp said.

Heitkamp, D-N.D., and Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., announced earlier this month that Moniz and Foxx will participate in the Aug. 8 energy review in Bismarck, which will focus on infrastructure constraints with an emphasis on the Bakken.

The meeting is open to the public and there will be a public comment period.

The public can submit comments prior to the meeting by visiting the Department of Energy website, http://energy.gov/epsa/downloads/qer-public-meeting-bismarck-nd-infrastructure-constraints

Other speakers include White House Office of Science and Technology Director John P. Holdren and Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management Janice M. Schneider.

The Quadrennial Energy Review includes a series of meetings across the country to examine critical energy issues.

“North Dakota is on the forefront of energy development and we’re doing it all – oil, gas, coal, wind, and biofuels,” said Heitkamp, D-N.D., in a statement. “We have a great deal of insight to offer as the administration seeks input from communities across the country about energy transportation, infrastructure, and development, and I hope many North Dakotans will offer their thoughts.”

Hoeven, R-N.D., pushed for an energy review as part of legislation filed in July of 2012. The goal is to help the federal government better meet its responsibility of providing affordable, clean and secure energy services to Americans.

“We included it in the Domestic Jobs and Energy Act, a bill that will help create a ‘states first,’ all-of-the-above energy plan for our nation similar to the Empower North Dakota plan we built for North Dakota from 2002 to 2010,” Hoeven said in a statement.

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