About the Task Force
In May 2020, due to the oil price collapse and COVID-19 pandemic, the North Dakota Oil & Gas Division estimated over 7,500 oil and gas wells in North Dakota were shut in, preventing close to 510,000 barrels of day of production.
The Bakken Restart Task Force was established and consisted of Department of Mineral Resources, Dept. of Environmental Quality, Trust Lands, Pipeline Authority, Office of Management and Budget, WAWS, Governor's Office, Public Service Commission, Tax Department, Commerce, Bank of North Dakota, Water Commission, and additional subject matter experts. The goal was threefold: Regulatory Relief; Economic Stimulus; and finding a path forward for a Bakken Restart.
To provide economic relief to those service companies and workers in Western North Dakota, the Bakken Restart Task Force sought use of the CARES Act Funds to facilitate a program that would create work for those who may otherwise be seeking assistance from unemployment. This would be in the form of plugging abandoned wells in the state. Learn more about these efforts by clicking on the CARES Act Funding overview on the right.