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Image courtesy of Dirk Ingo Franke/Wikimedia Commons.

Norway-based Statoil said Wednesday it will expand its use of technology that powers equipment with natural gas that would otherwise be flared at its Bakken, North Dakota sites.

The technology captures flare gas and uses it to power drilling rigs and equipment.

Statoil already implemented the technology in a pilot program at six drill rigs and one fracking fleet in Bakken.

The technology is being developed with GE and Calgary-based Ferus Natural Gas.

The system captures natural gas as it is released from oil wells and separates out liquid propane and butane. The remaining natural gas is then compressed. The compressed natural gas can be used to fuel trucks and other equipment.

Statoil said the technology, called the Last Mile Fueling Solution, will allow it capture between 3 million and 5 million cubic feet per day of natural gas.

“This is good for profit and the climate,” Statoil’s vice president for Bakken development and production Lance Langford said in a statement.

About one third of the natural gas that comes out of Bakken wells is flared.

GE and Ferus said they are in talks with other Bakken operators about using the technology.

Statoil is the ninth largest Bakken lease holder with 355,000 net acres.