Facebook founder tours Bakken oilfields

By North Dakota Petroleum Council | July 17, 2017

Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg visited the Bakken last week and had the opportunity to tour an oil rig near Williston, N.D. During the two hour tour, Zuckerberg visited with oil and gas employees and learned about the industry’s advancements in technology, safety and opportunity.

“It was a tremendous opportunity and a lot of fun to provide a Bakken drilling rig tour for Mark Zuckerberg as part of his visit America tour,” said Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council. “He had more questions than we had time in our two hours at the rig, and he took the time to meet and visit with many of the employees and learn about their jobs and experiences in North Dakota.”

The tour was organized by the North Dakota Petroleum Council with help from Statoil, Nabors Drilling and Neset Consulting Service as part of Zuckerberg’s plan to visit all 50 states. During the tour, Zuckerberg had a candid conversation with rig crew members about working in the industry, how the industry in North Dakota has afforded them opportunity they could not find at home, as well as how safety has grown tremendously along with technological advancement to enhance rather than replace their jobs.

“Regardless of your views on energy, I think you’ll find the community around this fascinating,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post early Wednesday morning. "Many people I talked to here acknowledged (climate change), but also feel a sense of pride that their work contributes to serving real needs we all have every day - keeping our homes warm, getting to work, feeding us and more.”

“This was an amazing opportunity to share information with a technology leader,” said Ness. “He now has a much broader grasp of our industry.”