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I feel proud that we are taking this stand."After discussion, the Turtle Mountain Tribal Council voted unanimously to form a new and expanded Tribal Water Board of Directors giving authority to the group to rewrite the tribe's water code.There was support from all members of the Council for the project and for protecting the tribe's water resources.In a recently released oil and gas assessment (April 30, 2013) by the United States Geological Survey, for the Baaken and Three Forks Formations of North and South Dakota and Montana, it was found that the estimate for oil reserves in the region, doubled to 7.4 billion barrels of potentially recoverable oil, a significant increase from 3.65 billion barrels from the 2008 assessment and expands the ‘Baaken Oil Play’ onto tribal ‘homelands’ previously thought to be unproductive.President Obama’s newly appointed Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell stated, “These world-class formations contain even more energy resource potential than previously understood, which is important information as we continue to reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign sources of oil.” More than 4,000 oil wells have been drilled in the Williston Basin since the 2008 assessment, with an estimated 6,000 more to be drilled in the near future.On the agenda for the tribal council meeting (May 7, 2013) that morning was 'WATER'.'Water Warriors' from 'No Fracking Way Turtle Mountain', a 'grassroots' activist group led by Carol Davis were scheduled to present to the council their power point on hydraulic fracturing or 'fracking' and discussion on why the group is concerned about protecting the tribe's most precious resource...water, ensuring it's use for the future generations.We need to protect our water here in the Turtle Mountains for our kids and grandkids."It wasn't the first time the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa made tribal history by taking a pro environment stand for Mother Earth.

North Dakota's Republican Senator John Hoeven stated, "This is good news for our state and our country", and believes that it would lessen our dependence on foreign oil.

Both have watched the explosion of oil development taking place on the Fort Berthold reservation located in western North Dakota in the last five years by the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nations and the infusion of wealth and prosperity along with the devastating social and environmental impacts that ‘big oil’ has brought to the MHA Nation.

The Fort Peck Assiniboine Sioux Tribes located on the western edge of the Baaken is actively exploring the development of their oil production and potential in the southeastern area of Fort Peck, near Brockton, Montana as an option for the economic development needed to relieve their tribes of extreme poverty and high unemployment.

As of 2011 there were 6,200 active wells in the Williston Basin.

In addition, there is an estimated 6.7 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered, technically recoverable natural gas reserves due to the inclusion of the Three Forks Formation in the new assessment.

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Tribal candidates will be challenged by membership concerned about the hazards of the hydraulic fracturing, that goes along with major oil and gas development and the potential for contamination and environmental destruction of SRST tribal homelands.