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Published April 20 2013

ND lawmakers back measure aimed at curbing natural gas flaring

BISMARCK — The North Dakota Legislature has endorsed a measure aimed at curbing the oil industry's practice of burning natural gas.

The House voted 84-7 Friday to allow tax emptions for natural gas if it's used for such things as electrical generation or farm fertilizer. North Dakota's Senate approved the measure earlier.

More than 30 percent of the state's gas production is being burned off because development of the pipelines and processing facilities needed to handle it has not kept pace with production.

Oil companies in North Dakota can flare natural gas for a year without paying taxes or royalties on it. The new measure would extend the exemption for another year if a company collects at least 75 percent of the gas at well sites.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.