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resources People of Influence

  • Don Morrison , Ex. Director of DRC
  • Theodora Bird Bear , Chair of DRC Oil and Gas Committee. She has created a page documenting the effects of oil and gas development on Fort Berthold...
  • Donny Nelson, long time chair and member of DRC and WORC Oil and Gas Committees
  • J. Michael Veron, Lake Charles, LA lawyer, author of Shell Game, an autobiographical account of his family's litigation against Shell Oil Company for its dumping of saltwater on their farm and ranch land.
  • Derrick Braaten of Bismarck, North Dakota is a successor to Sarah Vogel. He and she have led the state of North Dakota in innovating claims for surface and mineral owners placed at disadvantaged by the people who bring you fuel for your car.
  • Harry Malcolm Pippin of Williston, North Dakota is one of the few lawyers who have the timerty to consider a salt contamination case.
  • Mark Trechock, former director of Dakatoa Resource Council is now serving the Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC). He is author of a paper entitled Gone for Good. He explains as have few others how and why fresh water used in the fracking process is consumptively used. For the first time in history, water used in industry is not returned to the hydrological cycle but is instead pumped into the depths of the earth becuase it is super saturated with salt.
  • Dennis Edward Johnson, Watford City, North Dakota is one of the brightest lights in the legal firmament on any matter related to surface and mineral interests. He recently won a signal mineral law case for Greggory Tank, a McKensie County rancher whose testimony on salt contaminated lands the case is a part of this website.
  • Claude Sem, CEO of Farm Credit Services of Minot, North Dakota is the first ag-lender who has explained that salt contaminated land has negative value. The consequence of salt conatmination means that not only the land is not credit worthy but also that adjoining lands may be damaged by leachate. The implication is that the North Dakota ag-lending community and appraisers must consider whether they will participate in sales of contaminated land.
  • Myron Hanson and Gaylen Peterson, officers in the North West Landowner Association. This organization has elicited the break through testimony of Claude Sem.
  • Edward C. Murphy, Assistant Director Geological Survey of North Dakota, State Geologist. He is the author of the seminal paper on leachate, the developer of appropriate protocols for controlling contamination caused by uranium bearing coals. He is the profit of doom for North Dakota farmers who do not act now to confine salt water movement by forcing responsible parties, the state or oil companies. Murphy's methods include placing clay domes over pits and curtaining the plumes with drain tiles and sump pumps.
  • Marvin E. Nelson, North Dakota legislator and ag-consultant presented pivotal testimony at the 4-8-2014 hearing on salted lands convened by Senator Rich Wardner, Chair of the Energy Development and Transportation Committee. Nelson's testimony opened the eyes of the key legislative leaders of North Dakota. He is convinced that remediating salt poisoned land is affordable and absolutely necessary.
  • Greggory Tank, Watford City, North Dakota, rancher, frequent litigator and winner of signal case Tank vs. Citation Oil. His case stands for the proposition that an oil company may not hold a lease by either deceptive practices or by simply pumping water. In Bottineau County, many wells are pumped with little or no production of oil in order to hold the lease for future development. Many of these old wells have defective equipment and are chronic sources of salt spills. Tank himself has lands which have been damaged by deliberate releases of reserve pit brines.
  • Darrell Dorgan of Bismarck, North Dakota, owner of Dakom Communications has been the investigative journalist that disclosed the defaults of the North Dakota Health Department in matters of radiation brought to the surface with Bakken Oil. The health department has trivialized violations of North Dakota's rules on safe disposal of radioactive material. Dorgan has demonstrated that the state has neglected its duty. Filter socks have been dumped in abandoned buildings. The North Dakota Health Department has not acknowledged levels of pico curies that do threaten public health. His op-eds appear frequently and expose the breach of trust by not only the health department but also by the oil and gas division. The implications are that the three North Dakota agencies whose responsibilities involve water ought to be subjected to performance audits to determine whether or not Dorgan is right that the agencies have not performed their statutory duties.
  • Jennifer Nielson and Jill Caldwell, owners of Good Lands Environmental Inc., whose mantra is "Minimizing the impact of future operations while reducing the footprint of past generations" have demonstrated success in reclaiming salted lands by use of drain tiles and capture basins. The secret is to constantly pump the drain lines and basins. On their successful project they were working with soil that exists in Bottineau County. The Good Lands Environmental is the best candidate for a demonstration project to restore the salted lands in the Fossum Estate.  This estate is located in the most densly devloped and heavily salted oil fields in North Dakota called the Wiley. Ed Murphy did his research on the Wiley Field. The Wiley Field, especially Renville and Hastings townships deserve multiple remediation scientists attention. Ms. Nielson and Caldwell would provide independent insight not influenced by the politics of North Dakota insiders.
  • Kari Cutting, Vice President of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, Bismarck, North Dakota began her career at the New Freedom mine in the reclamation department for Coteau Properties Company. In personal interviews, her only concern has been wealth building. She has recently begun to address rail safety because of explosions of Bakken crude shipped by Canadian and American railroads. She has pointedly expressed disinterest in finding salted lands. Without finding them, they can not be remediated. The more prominently issue becomes the more responsive she and her collegues will become.
  • Doug Goering, current Secretary of Agriculture of North Dakota, has declined invitations to debate his advisary Ryan Taylor on matters related to North Dakota's most important farm issues. One of them include the destructive impact of the first sixty years of salt spills, the legacy. He has refused to admit that there is a danger that the Bakken development will release millions of gallons of additional salt because the state does not require guaging of salt water.
  • Rich Wardner, Dickinson, North Dakota, leader of republican dominated Senate, former science teacher and coach at Mohall, a Renville and Bottineau County border town whose surrounding lands are heavily damaged by salt spills. He chaired the first serious consideration of salt contamination by any legislative or executive branch of government.
  • Robert Stroup, deceased, Hazen, North Dakota, former leader of Republican dominated Senate, author of North Dakota's Mined Land Reclamation Act. He is rarely given credit for responsible industrial energy development in North Dakota. His legacy is overshadowed by Democratic Governor Art Link.
  • Art Link, deceased, Alexander, North Dakota, Democratic Governor who wrote the memorable poem about what the next generation will find when the last earth move has moved the last load of dirt, coal mining has ceased and the land has gone silent.
  • John Davis, deceased, McClusky, North Dakota, Republican Governor who gave his ranch to nature conservancy.