Barry County, Others to be Auctioned for Fracking

Read more about this fracking comic created by WMEAC intern Holly Wright here.

The State of Michiganis holding an Oil and Gas Lease Auction involving 23 counties acrossMichigan, four of which areWest Michigan counties: Newaygo, Mecosta, Oceana and Barry counties. InBarryCounty alone 23,000 acres are being auctioned off to oil and gas drillers that use the controversial hydraulic fracturing process, also known as fracking.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources will auction mineral rights May 8 to nearly all of Yankee Springs Township including Yankee Spring Recreational area and land surrounding Gun Lake. Residents of Barry County are increasingly concerned about the negative impact the auction and subsequent drilling will have upon the environment.

Fracking is the process of injecting a mixture of water, chemicals and sand underground at a very high pressure. This blasts apart geological formations so that natural gas can flow and be brought to the surface.

There are several health and environmental concerns surrounding fracking, including the use of at least 750 chemicals of which at least 29 are carcinogens, the contamination of drinking water, excessive water withdrawls (up to 6 million gallons of groundwater per wellhead), and the possible induction of earthquakes.

An informational meeting concerning the allowance of oil and gas drilling and hydraulic fracturing of public lands inGunLakewill take place Tuesday, May 1 from 6 to 8:30pm at Pierce Cedar Creek. The meeting is open to area landowners and anyone interested in learning more about oil and gas leasing of private properties.

WMEAC is monitoring the situation closely and will have a more formal response later in the week.

0 replies
    • Aslam
      Aslam says:

      Since Canada is bound by NAFTA for natural gas dlreveeiis to the US, how will they possibly have enough natural gas available to process the tar sands? The extraction of crude oil from tar sands uses a lot of natural gas energy for the extraction. It does get cold in Canada and I’m sure the citizens there are going to want to use heat in the winters to stay warm.

      Reply
  1. Drew
    Drew says:

    Can anyone show me a problem with drinking water (in Michigan) that is directly related to hydraulic fracturing? I believe the DEQ has been regulating this process in Michigan for many years and am looking for specific instances of problem. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Michelle Taylor
      Michelle Taylor says:

      Some examples of the devastation from fracting and extensive negative environmental impacts are evident in many states such as Pennsylvania, New York, Colorado, Wisconsin, and more…

      Fracting ONLY lines the pockets of VERY FEW… Oil companies and other special interests will work diligently to deregulate and mix it up at the local, state, and federal level in Michigan. See Cooperstown Holstein Corp. v. Town of Middlefield, (No. 2011-0930) Feb. 24, 2012 (N.Y. Sup Ct.), Anscbutz Exploration Corp. v. Town of Dryden, (No. 2011-0902) Feb. 21, 2012 (N.Y. Sup. Ct.)

      Reply
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous says:

      Most of the fracking in MI so far has been some less intensive vertical wells. Deep horizontal wells have only been done in MI for about 10 years at most and there are only 12 of them up(so far). These wells are far more dangerous and use far more water and chemicals, and are the ones that have been causing problems al lover the country. When Gov. Snyder says that we have been “fracking” since 1952 he is talking about a whole different league and is not giving us the complete picture. These wells are dangerous and have no business in the state and especially in our recreation areas.

      Reply
  2. Cal Lamoreaux
    Cal Lamoreaux says:

    They say it is already happening here and it is safe, so far. But we hear of horrible breaks and spills our east. And now we find it causes earthquakes!!

    Reply
    • Michelle Taylor
      Michelle Taylor says:

      Cal, they say it is safe… is FALSE! NO remediation for fracking has EVER existed in this Nation! For the people to prove cause and effect for their illness and restoration to restore the abandond environmental waste land up until this point in our Nation has been very challenged to say the least… Once the damage is done these companies simply move on or go out of business. In the case of fracking, not only does it create the waste land, it uses up the clean water resource and creates the waste land.
      Make no mistake, In Michigan we have the “fox in the hen house,” in critical areas that is having a profound impact on our quality of life, ability to pursue happiness, and be safe from environmental harm. Our “future” sustainability is TODAY!
      “We” as a society must demand that our political and economical institutions change or we are for the lack of a better word, screwed! Putting an end to fracking is a start! I have been trying to fight this sense 2008! No one believed me and/or denied, denied, and denied… and I have proof in writing with a signitures!

      Reply
  3. Sheila
    Sheila says:

    Where in Michigan is hydraulic fracturing being done, meaning the deep unconventional wells using horizontal drilling? Where does the water used come from? The impact of the water bottling industry in Michigan is going to look like nothing compared to this, given the millions of gallons of water used per well in fracking. And what about the wastewater?

    The price of natural gas low now–more gas on the market isn’t going to make it higher!

    Reply
  4. SerenityByKaren
    SerenityByKaren says:

    Yes, they say that it’s safe… That’s what they told the people in Wyoming, Colorado, New York, and Pennsylvania too. Do a little research about the people living there and what it’s done to their health. People are dying because of these dangerous practices… and it’s just going to continue unless we stop it. This is a very big deal for Michigan!!! Wake up people! The Great Lakes are a huge natural resource for everyone! Once they are contaminated there won’t be any going back.

    Reply
    • Michelle Taylor
      Michelle Taylor says:

      Can every one help me on this. If I understand our Michigan Consitution correctly, under Article X, Sec. 5 State Lands, State land reserves: No land in the state land reserve may be removed from the reserv, sold, leased, or otherwise disposed of except by an act of the legislature. History: Const. 1963, Art. 5, Eff. Jan. 1, 1964. Have we gotten any transparancy on who allowed for the auction for the land? Was it the correct authority in the first place? And/or was the the part of our Michigan Constitution that has been recently repealed or re invented because much has and it lacks trasparancy and i am having a hard time getting the information. If any of the above information is already known would you please share it with me… thanks

      Reply
  5. Richa
    Richa says:

    Why the rush? Why do the companies wanting this insist on keeping most of the chemicals they use secret? Yankee Springs Recreation Area is one of the largest and nicest semi-wild places in our part of the state – do you think, even if you believe fracking can be done safely – that we should even take a chance of compromising the beauty of this area?

    Reply
  6. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    Ban Michigan Fracking is starting a petition to get a ballot initiative for a state constitutional amendment to Ban the deep well horizontal practice that is the most problematic. Very few of this type in the state yet. Need signatures by mid July. We must stop it now. Check out the great video by Bill Belitskus of the Alleghany Defense Project. Penn. has been devastated by this and he has a lot of experience with the issue.

    Reply
    • Michelle Taylor
      Michelle Taylor says:

      Important, oil companies and those with a special interest in favor of hydrolic fracting will target states and seek refuge in a less restrictive state statute regulating and have water reserves to exploit needed for the fracting process. Also, most likely work diligently to deregulate local and state natural gas industry regulation, zoning codes such as removing AG zoning areas etc, and the local ordinances and real tax laws.

      Reply
  7. Michelle Taylor
    Michelle Taylor says:

    WMEAC this is not one to sit back and idly watch, it calls for immediate action!
    This is not good! Hydrolic fracting impacts the groundwater pollution, surface water, soil, and extensive water use. Some examples of the devastation from fracting and extensive negative environmental impacts are evident in many states such as Pennsylvania, New York, Colorado, Wisconsin, and more…

    Fracting ONLY lines the pockets of VERY FEW… Oil companies and other special interests will work diligently to deregulate and mix it up at the local, state, and federal level in Michigan. See Cooperstown Holstein Corp. v. Town of Middlefield, (No. 2011-0930) Feb. 24, 2012 (N.Y. Sup Ct.), Anscbutz Exploration Corp. v. Town of Dryden, (No. 2011-0902) Feb. 21, 2012 (N.Y. Sup. Ct.)

    Important, oil companies and those with a special interest in hydrolic fracting will target states and seek refuge in a less restrictive state statute regulating and have water reserves to exploit needed for the fracting process.

    Also, they will most likely work diligently to deregulate local and state natural gas industry regulation, zoning codes, and the local ordinances and real tax laws. Will give substantial amounts of grant money to local universities for research, support campaigns for those running or seeking re election-sound familiar?

    Set up grass root buy in projects that lack transparency and misleading- for example, calling for a movement for deregulation of natural gas, misleading people in thinking in doing so it will allow for better and fair natural gas trade in the State of Michigan. Does any of this sound familiar? Yes, it sure does!

    WMEAC, again, time to ACT!

    Reply

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