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Labor Day weekend marked the end of the summer travel season, and preliminary figures suggest that it was a strong summer for tourism in Montana.
Montana hotel occupancy outperformed the national average in June and July, and Montana topped all 50 states with 84 percent hotel room occupancy in July. Demand for Montana hotel rooms also increased average daily room rates by nearly 8 percent in June and more than 4 percent in July over the previous year according to Smith Travel Research, Inc.
Small U.S. oil producers with big acreage in the remote Bakken shale field of Montana, North Dakota and Saskatchewan are ripe for acquisitions due to their cheap valuations, according to Reuters.
Companies operating in Bakken, where output is expected to double to about 1.2 million barrels per day by 2015, are cheaper than peers in other oil shales as poor infrastructure makes it difficult to transport crude to major markets on the Gulf coast.
The strategy behind the hunt for oil in North Dakota is about to change according to a report from KXNews Television in North Dakota.
Companies are pursuing new ideas about how to get oil to the surface. "For a few years now, oil companies have been rushing all over western North Dakota - drilling wells at a frenzied pace - trying to understand exactly what kind of pool of oil was waiting to be pumped out of Bakken."
Lynn Helms, ND Dept. of Mineral Resources, explained, "They were drilling a single well in a spacing unit trying to find the edges, the economic edge of the Bakken."
BNSF Railway announced that it has increased capacity in 2012 to enable the railroad to haul one million barrels per day out of the Williston Basin in North Dakota and Montana. This increased capacity will allow the energy industry to continue the record expansion of oil production in the Williston Basin and to ship the new production to markets throughout the U.S. It will also benefit shippers of other commodities, including agricultural products.
MDU Resources Group, Inc. announced that K. Frank Morehouse has been named president of the corporation's utility group, which includes Montana-Dakota Utilities Co., Great Plains Natural Gas Co., Cascade Natural Gas Corp. and Intermountain Gas Co.
Morehouse's new role will be effective Jan. 4, 2013. He replaces David L. Goodin who earlier this month was named to succeed Terry D. Hildestad as president and CEO of MDU Resources upon Hildestad's retirement Jan. 3, 2013.
Robert Bryce's energy policy is very simple: "I'm in favor of air conditioning and cold beer."
Bryce, the featured speaker of the annual Montana Petroleum Day Appreciation Luncheon in Billings, is a senior fellow with the Center for Energy Policy and the Environment at the Manhattan Institute, and author of "Gusher of Lies: The Dangerous Delusions of Energy Independence," and "Power Hungry – the Myths of Green Energy and the Real Fuels of the Future."
During his presentation to some 300 guests of the Montana Petroleum Association, Bryce declared that the new technologies being employed in shale oil development is a "game changer," throughout the world in regard to energy development.
"The rest of the world does not have any shale," he said. What's happening in the US in regard to oil and natural gas development is "enormously good news."
Statoil ASA is leasing more than 1,000 railroad cars to carry crude oil from oilfields in North Dakota to refiners across North America, in a bid to overcome the pipeline bottlenecks that ,plague the booming oil-producing region.
According to NASDAQ, the Norwegian oil giant's railroad venture is a new sign of how the existing U.S. pipeline network is having a hard time coping with the oil boom triggered by hydraulic fracturing —forcing companies to come up with creative workarounds.
Amid the challenge of pulling together the first ever Montana Energy Day at Montana Fair, a very energetic couple, and their relatively new entrepreneurial effort, has emerged as significant players on the energy front in eastern Montana and western North Dakota – Laura and Kendall McRae, with their business, "synergystation.com".
The Big Sky Business Journal
P.O. Box 3262
Billings, MT 59103