BISMARCK, N.D. — A company has begun site work for an oil refinery about five kilometres from Theodore Roosevelt National Park in western North Dakota.
Meridian Energy Group says it’s hired a Minnesota-based company to handle such work as grading land, installing erosion control devices and developing stormwater ponds.
Several environmental groups oppose the Davis Refinery, fearing it will impact the park’s scenery. They’ve launched several challenges, including a lawsuit over a state air quality permit that allows construction to proceed.
North Dakota Air Quality Director Terry O’Clair has said that in light of the lawsuit, Meridian is proceeding at its own risk.
Construction of the $800 million refinery itself isn’t planned until next year, with operations to start in 2020.