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The United States should take greater advantage of its vast natural-gas resources by developing more large-scale uses for the lower-cost fuel, North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple said last week during his address at a national energy conference in Washington, D.C."Growing demand for compressed natural gas, nitrogen fertilizers and alternative fuels for transportation are creating new opportunities to add value to natural gas produced in North Dakota and other states," he said, according to a press release issued by the governor's office. "By developing greater utilization we can further diversify our energy supply and continue to reduce our dependence on foreign oil."North Dakota continues to work with the energy industry to expand natural gas processing capacity in the state. Since 2006, capacity has jumped from about 225 million cubic feet per day to 1.2 billion cubic feet per day. More natural gas could be produced in North Dakota and transported by rail and truck, said Dalrymple.Two major projects are under way in North Dakota to process natural gas into nitrogen fertilizer for the region’s farmers, and railroads are researching the use of liquid natural gas as a locomotive fuel source, he said."These [gas] processing plants are a great example of the value that can be added to our energy resources," said Dalrymple.