Over 300 people attended a series of meetings June 23-24 in northwestern South Dakota focused on oil and gas development in the state. Meetings, sponsored by South Dakota Farmers Union, were held in Buffalo, Lemmon and Isabel. A group of experts discussed a potential oil boom in northwestern South Dakota. Before the Boom: Know Your Mineral Rights was a meeting sponsored by the South Dakota Farmers Union to educate the public about preparing for oil and gas development.
The state of North Dakota now ranks second in the country behind Texas in oil production, and there is wide speculation that northwestern South Dakota could be the next place to undergo an “Oil Boom” if developers begin to tap into what many believe is an oil and gas reserve in the area. An increase in oil and gas production brings economic benefits, but also many challenges to landowners and local infrastructure.
South Dakota Farmers Union is urging USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack to open Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands in South Dakota to haying and grazing because of continued drought conditions. CRP lands are typically closed to haying and grazing after landowners enter into a contract with the government promising to not farm, graze or hay the land. Landowners receive government payments to keep the land in CRP.
In a study of South Dakota agricultural practices over the past 25 years, a team of ten scientists at South Dakota State University have documented that modern farming practices measurably increase the yield potential of the soil, and capture carbon in the environment. The result is literally a cleaner, more economically vibrant environment.