DeSmogBlog has obtained hundreds of documents portraying the blurred lines between North Dakota's government, the oil and gas industry and the private equity world. They also offer one of the first looks inside the professional life of former CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus after he resigned from the agency in 2012.
The documents reveal Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR) — a private equity firm where Petraeus now works at the KKR Global Institute — wrote a press release for North Dakota's State Treasurer announcing the Petraeus visit, meticulously counseled the state treasurer's office on media strategy and hosted the state treasurer on its company plane.
A large part of Petraeus' visit centered around a tour of the state's Bakken Shale basin, where upwards of 1 million barrels of oil are extracted each day via hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”). The Bakken pumped out its billionth barrel of oil during his stay.
KKR, with $87 billion in assets, owns two major Bakken entities: The Ridge in Williston, ND, and Samson Resources.
The Ridge is a KKR-owned housing complex for Bakken oil and gas workers, while Samson Resources is a major company fracking for oil and gas throughout the U.S., including in the Bakken.
With over $4 billion sitting in an energy investment fund as of June 2012, KKR also owns over $950 million in oil and gas industry assets. Marc Lipschultz, head of energy and infrastructure for KKR, called the firm a “mini oil and gas company“ in an April 2013 interview with Privcap.
“We have our own technical abilities attached to the firm we have our own back office [and] we can manage the daily flows of oil and gas in drilling wells and managing our own hedges,” said Lipschultz.