Drillers pumping oil on the Great Plains are also producing a lot of natural gas. But the state doesn't have the infrastructure to transport or store it, so much of that gas isn't being sold — it's being set on fire.
North Dakota's oil sector is booming, but agriculture remains the state's largest industry. And while many farmers and ranchers are profiting from the oil beneath the prairie, others complain that drilling is interfering with their business — and changing rural life as they know it.
Prices for natural gas are rising again with much of the nation experiencing cold weather. In Ohio, utilities are asking customers to turn down thermostats to make sure there's enough gas for everyone.
The National Transportation Safety Board is calling for the swift enactment of tough new standards on trains carrying crude oil. With the huge increase in oil shipped by rail across North America, safety officials warn another major disaster could be looming.
Oil is now running through the southern part of the keystone XL pipeline. Supporters and opponents will be watching carefully to see what that could mean for the northern section of the project, that still awaits approval from the Obama administration.
This week in Iran, international inspectors are stepping up surveillance of the country's nuclear program. The inspections are at the heart of a landmark deal that freezes Iran's uranium enrichment in exchange for billions of dollars in relief from sanctions, but they are just a first step.
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