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White House leaders to meet in Bismarck next month

By Emily Aasand | July 21, 2014

On August 8, federal and White House leaders will meet on the Bismarck State College campus as part of a national review of the country’s energy strategy.

Next month’s meeting is being led by the U.S. Department of Energy. DOE Secretary Ernest Moniz and U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, along with U.S. Senators Heidi Heitkamp, who proposed the meeting be held in North Dakota, and John Hoeven, who proposed establishing a quadrennial energy review, will speak during the meeting.

The review, which includes a series of meetings across the nation to examine critical energy issues and help the Administration develop a national policy for energy infrastructure is part of President Barack Obama’s Quadrennial Energy Review (QER).

Heitkamp’s meeting proposal, highlighted North Dakota’s unique opportunity to provide insight from state and local government officials, tribal leaders, energy and utility companies, research universities, and large and small businesses are operating in the fastest growing state in the country.

“To truly talk about our nation’s energy strategy, it has to include North Dakota. That’s why I pushed for Secretary Moniz to hold one of the Department of Energy’s national energy policy meetings in our state,” said Heitkamp. “North Dakota is on the forefront of energy development and we’re doing it all—oil, gas, coal, wind, and biofuels. We have a great deal of insight to offer as the Administration seeks input from communities across the county about energy transportation, infrastructure, and development, and I hope many North Dakotans will offer their thoughts.”

The goal of the QER is to help the Federal government provide affordable, clean, and secure energy services to Americans. The meeting in North Dakota will focus on infrastructure constraints, with a specific focus on the Bakken.

“In July of 2012, we filed legislation that called for a quadrennial energy review as a part of a comprehensive energy plan for the country,” said Hoeven. “We included it in the Domestic Jobs and Energy Act, a bill that will help create a ‘state first,’ all-of-the-above energy plan for our nation similar to the Empower North Dakota plan we built for North Dakota from 2002-2010.”

Additional regional meetings have been scheduled around the country in upcoming months.