New Gas Capture Policy is said to help oil industries in the Bakken lower flaring

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BISMARCK, N.D. - The state's industrial commission met to talk about a new gas capture policy.

The policy will let oil companies know what their specific gas capture goal is, and what they should focus on.

Part of this policy helps industries reduce flaring requirements and drill wells where there's already infrastructure.

Oil industry experts say flaring is a continuous issue in the oil industry, and the aim of state's new gas capture policy. The Oil and Gas Division says it hopes to continue to bring flaring down.

The division says flaring has already been brought down from 36 percent to 12 percent.

"The next goal is to make sure that we're always at 12 percent or less and then by 2020, we plan to be at 9 percent or less," said Lynn Helms, director of the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources.

Part of the gas capture policy helps enforce flaring requirements for oil companies.

"The state regulators then are looking at what regulations should be in place to ensure that the maximum value of that natural gas is received in the region," said Pipeline Authority Director Justin Kringstad.

Kringstad says by reducing the flaring in the Bakken, the Gas and Oil Division is increasing gas capture rates throughout the years.

"The value from the Bakken oil is in the crude oil. So the natural gas has less economic incentive. In today's market it is very attractive to make those investments but again the goal is to not waste that resource," said Kringstad.

As part of the gas capture, Kringstad says there will be additional pipelines and gas processing plants being constructed by the industry to capture those natural gas resources.

Kringstad says there will also be more activity in the Bakken as part of the gas capture development.