It’s been a cold Spring. Winter came late this year in Michigan and Spring has been pushed back. The first four months ended April 30, 2016 have been freezing. But, we’ve finally turned the corner and it’s getting warmer. Sun’s out guns out for the next 5 or 6 months straight and a we are all looking forward to the warm weather. Free heat from the sun will reduce natural gas demand from consumers all across Michigan and the Midwest until next winter. Michiganders demand natural gas to stay warm for months on end through the cold season with a just a simple digital click of their thermostats. Nearly 80% of Michiganders heat their homes with natural gas as well as use natural gas to dry their laundry and heat their chicken noodle soup. Natural gas is poised to gain additional market share in 2016 around the world and to displace demand for oil similar to the way it has displaced demand for coal.
2015 Michigan petroleum production numbers are approximately 98% reported as of today. RMP has always focused on the numbers as they are often greater than adjectives. Opinions are overrated. People want to hear the numbers and then decide for themselves. This is RMP’s fifth year studying, parsing, organizing, compiling, and reporting numbers related to Michigan petroleum production. The information RMP publishes will always be free access to the public. RMP has always followed three fundamental tenets as a research and reporting philosophy:
It’s all about the rock. Always respect the geology.
Follow the money. Money talks.
Follow the wastewater. Waste means inefficiency and problems. Inefficiency and problems mean additional costs. With regard to costs, see point #2.
Crickets. New oil & gas activity in the Michigan Basin is so slow through the first quarter of 2016 that the only thing you can hear at the OOGM permitting department is crickets. 2015 was the slowest year in Michigan oil & gas history for new permitting activity breaking the old record set in 1931. In the first three months of 2015, the slowest year in Michigan history, the Office of Oil, Gas, & Minerals (OOGM) had received 24 applications and had issued 28 permits. As of today, through the first three months of 2016, Michigan’s OOGM has received only two applications and issued only six permits. New oil & gas permitting activity in 2016 is on pace to set the bar substantially lower than last year’s record as the slowest year ever.
The Detroit Free Press published an article March 10, 2016 written by Keith Matheny that raises awareness about groundwater contamination at Wurtsmith Air Force Base (WAFB) in Oscoda, Michigan. You can read the Freep article by clicking here. Keith’s article has current information and details about an upcoming “open house” being held by the MDEQ & US Air Force on March 23, 2016 in Oscoda in order to brief the public about groundwater contamination at WAFB. Each day thousands of gallons of Pure Michigan freshwater soak through Landfill #27 and become contaminated water that flows south through Clark’s Marsh to the Au Sable River and then out to Lake Huron. The extent of the contamination plume around WAFB is not fully understood but ongoing studies are underway to delineate the pollution. A “do not eat” fish advisory was issued immediately after data first became available on May 2, 2012 that showed contamination levels at WAFB above GSI criteria. It’s great to see Freep covering issues that raise awareness about important contamination “hot spots” in the Michigan Basin. RMP has been working on a list of contaminated hot spots in Michigan and WAFB is on our top 10 list. In this post, I will write a little bit about Continue reading Landfill #27 At Wurtsmith Air Force Base→
The big story this month is the location of the Ensign #161 drilling rig. The lat/lon of Ensign #161 on the date of this post’s publication is 40.4293, -104.604 which is not a Michigan lat/lon. You can see a map of Ensign #161 along with 10 other active Ensign rigs in the same area of Colorado by clicking on this link (depending on when you read this, the location may have changed). With Ensign #161’s location in Greeley, Colorado, which is just north of Denver and just SE of Fort Collins, you might wonder: why is Ensign #161’s Colorado location the big story in Michigan in January of 2016?
Crude oil and internal combustion engines are a part of our lives. Crude oil refines into the primary energy that gets our vehicles around today. It’s what powers our cars and trucks on freeways across America every day. Crude oil is responsible for many jobs and products across our country and around the world. RMP takes those jobs, especially the jobs in America, very seriously. We feel a great responsibility to make sure it is well understood that we care about jobs provided by the oil & gas industry to Americans and people around the world. RMP advocates, however, for an immediate and responsible migration away from crude oil as a fuel source. By ramping up the displacement of internal combustion engines with fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), like the Toyota Mirai pictured above, America’s economy and national security will improve. Mirai is the Japanese word for future.
Understanding petroleum production in Michigan can be difficult if you’re new to it. It can also be confusing even after you’ve studied it. My 9 year old son just started the 2014-15 basketball season. The kids just had their first two practices last week and the coach warned the first few practices would be pretty boring. Coach said the first few practices would be dedicated to the fundamentals of dribbling, passing, and shooting exercises. Sometimes kids just want to play games. But, they’re never going to achieve success unless time is set aside at the beginning for learning the fundamentals. My point with that anecdote is the first steps toward understanding petroleum production in Michigan are much the same. The key elements of petroleum production to know first are: history, units of measure, production resource units, and pricing. Respectmyplanet has access to the same production data that everyone else does. What’s different is that we use exclusive software written for communicating this data in a way that’s interactive with our map. We intend in this article to give you a primer course on production basics so in future articles we can Continue reading Michigan Petroleum Production 101→
Welcome to respectmyplanet.org’s first article in a long time published from the WordPress software application. We’re glad to again be putting stories together that will help people understand more about oil & gas exploration in Michigan. We have been reviewing Michigan oil & gas data for 4 years now. We would like to share what we have learned from the past up through the present. We would also like to write about what future oil & gas exploration might look like in Michigan as our public owned hydrocarbon resources become increasingly more difficult for private companies to recover for profits.