BISMARCK, N.D. _ Urea plants to start operating in about two years could supply the entire state of North Dakota, and then some.

“We have a lot of demand in the state and a lot of demand in the region,” said Dave Franzen, a North Dakota State University Extension soil specialist.

The use of urea, an agricultural nitrogen-based fertilizer, has been on the rise, Franzen said. About 450,000 tons of it is used by farmers in the state each year, he said.

Dakota Gasification Co., said 2.4 million tons are imported into the region each year.

Three new plants, which will come online around the same time between 2016 and 2017, will together produce about 2 million tons of urea annually. That will offset about 83 percent of imports into the region.

*Article originally published on FarmAndRanchGuide.com, March 23, 2014. Click here to view full article.