This is Up and Down, where we give a brief thumbs up and thumbs down on the issues from the past week.

Up

Project CarbonSAFE being conducted in central North Dakota will investigate the geology more than a mile underground to determine if it is suitable for the storage of carbon dioxide captured from coal-based energy facilities. The project is headed by the University of North Dakota's Energy and Environmental Research Center and partially funded by the U.S. Department of Energy. Researchers hope to be able to use carbon dioxide captured from coal-based facilities for enhanced oil recovery in the Bakken, This could be a win on two fronts.

Down

Our neighbor state, Minnesota, is losing a senator to a widening sex harassment scandal. While the cases across the country aren’t related, the circumstances are similar: Men trying to use their power or reputations to take advantage of women. Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., was right to call for Sen. Al Franken’s resignation. There shouldn’t be any tolerance for this type of behavior.

Up

Chad Berger, of Mandan, did it again. He won his seventh PBR Stock Contractor of the Year award. Berger’s bucking bulls have been thrilling fans and defying cowboys for years. While Berger is well known on the national stage, he likes to show off his bulls locally. He’s an asset to the community and state.

Down

For years North Dakota has had a shortage of large animal veterinarians, especially in rural areas. The recent death of Gerard Dahl, a veterinarian in Park River, highlighted the issue. Many vets cover long distances to provide care for farmers and ranchers. Traveling 80 miles or more isn’t uncommon for vets. Their practices have to be mobile to provide care for large areas. It’s a challenge to lure vets to rural areas since there’s demand for their services in small animal clinics in larger cities and related services.

Up

One of the great things about the holiday season is the entertainment. Not only are there national shows, like Lorie Line who will be at the Belle Mehus Auditorium this week, but a lot of community events. Schools and churches will be presenting Christmas programs this month. There’s usually a program of some kind every night. It’s a great way to enjoy the season.

Down

The Cartwright Tunnel, the state's only railroad tunnel, needs repairs. The tunnel and adjoining Fairview Lift Bridge are along a former Great Northern Railroad line in the Yellowstone River Valley about 30 miles west of Watford City. It's estimated it will cost $500,000 to fix the tunnel and supporters are searching for funds. This is a special part of North Dakota history and it would be a shame to see it lost to public use.

Outbrain