Distributional impacts of the North Dakota gas flaring policy

A drilling area in North Dakota can be seen in this nighttime image of the United States.

The Electricity Journal (2019)
by Utkarsh Srivastava, David Oonk, Ian Lange, and Morgan Bazilian

Abstract: This paper considers whether the reform of North Dakota’s natural gas flaring policy provided large operators a competitive advantage, leading to increased market concentration. North Dakota was the highest gas flaring and venting state in USA until it was taken over by Texas in 2015 coinciding with the implementation of its gas flaring policy in 2014. Two analyses are performed in North Dakota (and Wyoming, as a control) to compare the effect that the flaring policy had on the state’s oil sector. The analyses show mixed evidence, larger firms gained an advantage leading to fewer smaller firms operating in the state. The paper concludes with highlighting possible further areas for research, and methodologies for acquiring more reliable data. Read more …

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