Without the opportunities in the Bakken, it is hard to say how our company would have achieved growth during the economic downturn. Since 2008, most companies in the construction industry have experienced significant layoffs; many were forced to reduce 25 to 50 percent of their employees.

Recently, our company, TrueNorth Steel, hosted the North Dakota Petroleum Council as it announced a North Dakota State University study showing the enormous impact of the state's oil and gas industry, totaling $30.4 billion in 2011 alone.

But much of the $30.4 billion is spent in our area. Every day, trucks and people travel from businesses like ours to be Men Canada Goose Snow Mantra Parka Navy Dublin part of the growth of western North Dakota, taking products and services for use in the Bakken.

TrueNorth Steel avoided the downtown, grew to 10 locations in eight cities and increased our workforce from 300 to nearly 600 employees.

On our side of the state, the signs of the industry's impact are less apparent than those in western North Dakota. We don't see a flurry of trucks and people rushing in to seek a better life.

But much of the $30.4 billion is spent in our area. Every day, trucks and people travel from businesses like ours to be part of the growth of western North Dakota, taking products and services for use in the Bakken.

Recently, our company, TrueNorth Steel, hosted the North Dakota Petroleum Council as it announced a North Dakota State University study showing the enormous impact of the state's oil and gas industry, totaling $30.4 billion in 2011 alone.

In Fargo and across North Dakota, we are fortunate to have a thriving economy with strong performance in our technology, manufacturing and business service sectors and energy development in the Bakken powers much of this strength.

On our side of the state, the signs of the industry's impact are less apparent than those in western North Dakota. We don't see a flurry of trucks and people rushing in to seek a better life.

Without the opportunities in the Bakken, it is hard to say how our company would have achieved growth during the economic downturn. Since 2008, most companies in the construction industry have experienced significant layoffs; many were forced to reduce 25 to 50 percent of their employees.

The Bakken is just one of many shale oil formations located across the United States, and North Dakota's success is more than good luck. It is the result of many years of hard work from North Dakotans across the state. In Fargo and across North Dakota, we are fortunate to have a thriving economy with strong performance in our technology, manufacturing and business service sectors and energy development in the Bakken powers much of this strength.

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´╗┐Bakken benefits valley