Michigan Oil & Gas Production Report January – December 2015

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.

Following the money has proven to be difficult because of the voluminous and Continue reading “Michigan Oil & Gas Production Report January – December 2015”

Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – March 2016

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.

As always, however, there’s a lot going on in Michigan oil & gas even if the permitting department of the OOGM is Continue reading “Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – March 2016”

Landfill #27 At Wurtsmith Air Force Base

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”

Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – February 2016

Niagaran Flare Stack

Each month, RMP publishes a detailed recap of oil & gas activity in the Michigan Basin.   This edition marks our 14th since our inaugural monthly edition was published in January of 2015. It’s time to follow up on a couple things we reported in 2015. One of the hot topics in our hometown Detroit newspapers and on our Detroit radio stations is the application for the Word of Faith 16-27 well targeting Michigan’s Silurian age Niagaran Reef. Jordan Development out of Traverse City, Michigan filed the application in October of 2015.

WordOfFaithOilWellComment1
This is an example of the bolierplate used by many of the people who submitted a comment in favor of the Word of Faith 16-27 well being permitted for drilling.  Click to enlarge.

What makes the Word of Faith 16-27 oil well different than many other potential Michigan wells is that it’s within the city limits of Southfield, which has a population of nearly 75,000 people. Often times when an application is received for a well in a heavily populated Metro Detroit city, the MDEQ’s OOGM will extend the application review process to hear comments from the public. The MDEQ has sole legal authority to permit any Michigan oil well regardless of symbolic gestures like a moratorium enacted by the Southfield City Council in effect until April 28, 2016. Only a court ordered injunction via lawsuit can Continue reading “Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – February 2016”

Michigan Law 101 – How A Bill Becomes A Law

michigan legislature capitol

Understanding how a bill works its way through the Michigan legislature and becomes a law can be complicated if you don’t know where to start.  The process can be broken down, however, so it’s at least easier to understand the 101 basics. By the time you’ve finished reading this post you will know the fundamentals of how an idea becomes a Michigan Bill, how that bill works its way through Michigan’s legislature, and how that bill becomes a law. This post will also show you some web-based tools that can help you easily track a bill’s lifecycle and how to find a bill’s actual written text. It’s important to read the sponsored legislation verbatim rather than relying solely on another person’s opinion or cliff notes about the bill. RMP has done a couple “101” posts for subjects including Michigan Petroleum Geology 101 and Michigan Petroleum Production 101 in past posts and now it’s time for Continue reading “Michigan Law 101 – How A Bill Becomes A Law”

Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – October 2015

michigan oil & gas

The featured image above (Photo Credit: Neo), is of the flare stack at the Milford Sand & Gravel 1-32 well.  West Bay Exploration filed a petition with the Assistant Supervisor of Wells for an exception to Michigan No Flare Order Provisions of Special Order No. 3-71 to flare up to 100,000 scf of natural gas a day from the flare stack shown in the featured image of our October MOGM.  Harold Fitch, the Assistant Supervisor of Wells, signed the Notice of Hearing for this petition on October 9, 2015.  The gas flared at the Sand & Gravel pit comes from two other wells also:  the Kensington Metroparks 1-31 and the Kensington Metroparks 2-32.  The flowlines from the Kensington Metropark wells flow across Kent Lake over to the Continue reading “Michigan Oil & Gas Monthly – October 2015”