Bakken Guidance

Due to the unique properties of the Bakken, Three Forks, and Sanish formations, the Department has developed special guidelines and regulations related to the air quality requirements of facilities producing and processing oil and gas from these formations.

Questions may be addressed to the North Dakota Department of Health at 701.328.5188 or email Adam Rookey (arookey@nd.gov).


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Bakken Guidance for Oil and Gas Production Facilities

Compliance issues arose from the development of the Bakken formation that indicated VOC emission factors associated with the Bakken oil was higher than factor defaults in computer programs. The North Dakota Department of Health coordinated the development of the guidance with the Bakken VOC task force and multiple industry stakeholders when drafting the guidance. The purpose of this guidance is to help operators of oil and gas facilities better understand the VOC emissions associated with the oil in the Bakken formation and report them accurately.

A minimum of a pit flare with 90% DRE will be required for tank emission control on all new wells on the first date of production to ensure adequate control. Evaluations of emissions using the guidance will direct what level of control is needed next. More efficient pollution control is required for wells emitting higher emissions.


Oil & Gas Documents and Bakken Guidance

Due to the unique properties of the Bakken, Three Forks, and Sanish formations, the Department has developed special guidelines and regulations related to the air quality requirements of facilities producing and processing oil and gas from these formations. Many of these documents apply to other non-Bakken, Three Forks, or Sanish wells.

Document Name

Rev. Date

Doc Type

Memo to Operators About Guidance Document 02 May 2011 Policy
Oil and Gas Production Facilities Guidance (aka Bakken Guidance) 02 May 2011 Policy
Emission Calculation Workbook (.xls) 07 March 2013 Form
Well Registration Form (SFN 14334) 10-13 Form
Example of Completed Well Registration Form (SFN 14334)* 05-15 Form-Example
Examples of Completed Emission Calculation Workbook* 05-15 Form-Example
Examples of Gas Analysis* 05-15 Form-Example
Regulation Summary 01-13 Policy
NDDoH Clarification of VOC Emission Responsibilities for Oil & Gas Facilities Producing Prior to June 1, 2011 07-11 Policy
Air Pollution Control Equipment Operations (August) 20 August 2012 Policy
Air Pollution Control Equipment Operations (October) 19 October 2012 Policy
Storage Vessels at Oil & Gas Non-Production Facilities 27 May 2015 Policy
Storage Vessel Guidance 09 October 2013 Policy
ND Storage Vessel Registration Cover Letter 09 October 2013 Policy
ND Spreadsheet for Storage Vessel Guidance 09 October 2013 Policy

* All three, completed SFN 14334, completed Emission Calculation Workbook, and Gas Analysis must be submitted to the department within 90 days of first production. Failure to submit a complete registration packet for a new or re-completed well, within the 90 days, may be subject to enforcement action.

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Last Updated: 06/17/2015


Last Updated: 05/01/2015

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