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ENVIRONMENT

North Dakota has pursued a legal challenge to a moratorium that President Biden's administration imposed for oil leasing on federal lands. Lease sales are slated to reopen in North Dakota in the coming months.
The South Dakota Legislature has a menu of infrastructure fixes this year, including some state-owned spillways damaged in flooding and record rainfall in 2018 and '19. But few lawmakers will invoke the words "climate change," which an engineering professor says the state is not prepared to address.
While numerous other oil and gas producing states joined a single lawsuit to challenge an executive order by President Biden last year, North Dakota has opted to pursue a solo case against the administration.
Electric vehicle owners Tyler Bundy of Starbuck, Minnesota, and Brian Kopp of Dickinson, North Dakota, say they are often met with skepticism about winter performance.

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A years-old effort to build a bridge over the Little Missouri River in a remote part of the Badlands has been on ice since commissioners in Billings County voted this summer to abandon plans to push the project through using eminent domain. And last week, an attempt by the commission to get the state to take over the project fell flat after North Dakota's top transportation official said his department doesn't have the authority for that level of involvement.
The details were made in a May 2021 filing.
The river running along South Dakota' eastern border -- which just 10 years ago made a list of America's most polluted waterways -- still has inadequate protection from runoff from farms, golf courses, and industry sites, say water experts. A $3 million voluntary program run by the South Dakota Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources started last month to attract landowners to create buffer strips, but has yet to attract any applicants.
The Iowa-based Summit Carbon Solutions' proposed Midwest Carbon Express pipeline would be the world's largest carbon capture system, coalescing emissions from ethanol plants around the region and shipping it to North Dakota for permanent storage. But as the project picks up steam, it has prompted concern among landowners and environmental groups.
The Legislature exempt it from more rigorous environmental review. That less stringent environmental assessment worksheet has been the subject of criticism.
Talon Metals Corp. wants to capitalize on the growing demand for electric vehicles, but some residents and Indigenous bands are concerned about pollution from the underground mine.

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The move follows last week's initiation of a mineral withdrawal in the same watershed as the Boundary Waters.
The Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, one of the groups that opposed the changes, said they are “disappointed” with the EPA’s approval and are considering options, including a possible appeal.
The move bans new leases for at least two years and could lead to a 20-year mineral withdrawal. The move does not immediately target Twin Metals' existing leases.

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