GRAND FORKS, N.D. (AP) — A group planning a $1.5 billion nitrogen fertilizer plant in northeastern North Dakota has secured a supply of natural gas and is in the process of buying a site.

Northern Plains Nitrogen Chairman Darin Anderson said the company is buying land next to Grand Forks' municipal sewage lagoons north of the city and east of Interstate 29, the Grand Forks Herald reported ( ).

The plant will receive gas through an existing pipeline near the project site or directly from the western oil patch through a proposed pipeline, Anderson said.

"Those two are the big ones," Anderson said, referring to land and to natural gas, which will be converted into farm fertilizer such as anhydrous ammonia.

The abundance of natural gas being produced — and often burned off as a waste product — in the oil patch makes the resource cheaper in the state and the venture more viable, Anderson said.

Financing must still be arranged before plant construction can begin, CEO Don Pottinger said. The hope is to start building the plant in 2015 and have it operating in two years.

"We're happy with where we're at right now," Anderson said.