- Associated Press - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota’s top energy regulator says the low oil prices might jeopardize targets that require reducing the amount of natural gas that is burned off as a byproduct of the state’s oil production.

State Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms told some lawmakers Monday that the oil industry is exceeding rules that require reducing the amount of natural gas that is burned off as a byproduct of the state’s oil production.

But he says low oil prices have put some natural gas projects on hold in North Dakota and that may make reaching new capturing goals difficult.

The rules put in place a year ago require oil companies to capture 90 percent of natural gas by 2020.

Helms says the industry is capturing 82 percent of the natural gas at present.

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