If you're going to talk about energy in the United States, you might as well do it in North Dakota. The western part of the state had the good sense to be situated above a gigantic shale formation known as the Bakken, in which an enormous amount of natural gas and oil was trapped. Trapped, that is, until people figured out how to drill holes sideways through the shale and break it all up, sucking the oil and gas up to the surface. That's fracking, and it has made North Dakota one of the brightest spots in the American economy -- and the fastest-growing state in population year after year.
It is not a place where any politician, much less the Republican nominee for president, would disparage the use of fossil fuels. Donald Trump, who held a brief press conference there on Thursday, would perhaps be less inclined than most to say bad things about the oil industry, especially since his ...
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