ND Mercurial Economy Needs A Sustainable Boost

Just a few years ago North Dakota had one of the fastest growing economies in the country. Today we have the slowest according to this report in 24/7 Wall Street.
Overdependence on traditional energy sources and industries contributed to this first to worst scenario. It’s why it’s so important to diversify our energy portfolio in North Dakota. Embracing and leveraging technology to add more clean, renewable resources and industries to our energy mix is good business.

Here’s the article in 24/7 Wall Street:

States With the Fastest (and Slowest) Growing Economies

State Capitol, Bismarck, North Dakota

1. North Dakota
>2015 GDP growth:
-2.1%
> 2015 GDP: $50.3 billion (6th smallest)
> 1-yr. population change: 2.3% (the largest increase)
> 2015 unemployment: 2.7% (the lowest)

In the last two years, North Dakota transitioned from being the nation’s fastest growing economy to the nation’s fastest shrinking one. Thanks to the exploitation of oil in the Bakken shale formation and new more efficient extraction techniques, North Dakota’s GDP growth rate of 6.0% in 2014 was the fastest of any state and nearly three times the national rate. In 2015, however, after falling oil prices helped put an end to the boom, North Dakota’s economy contracted by 2.1%, the worst economic performance of any state.

At the beginning of last year, some 31,000 North Dakota residents were employed in the mining and logging sector. Through April 2016, the industry’s workforce dropped precipitously to just over 17,000. North Dakota’s 2015 unemployment was still the lowest of any state, at 2.7%. North Dakota is now one of many oil-dependent states facing an extreme budget deficit.

Thanks to Cass County Electric and their members that opted in to develop North Dakota’s first solar garden last year.

According to this report from PSC Commissioner Fedorchak, North Dakota generates more than 36 million megawatt hours of electricity and exports over 20 million megawatt hours. We’re also an oil producing state that exports oil (and much of the profits) only to import gasoline back.

Embracing and utilizing more electric drive vehicles and solar and wind energy would give our economy a giant sustainable boost with more efficient and clean ways to generate and use electricity. Join us at the Fargo Library on Wednesday April 19th from 1 – 3pm to see how we can help with the transition hosted by our CLEAN event – Spring

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