While the rest of North America boomed, oil and gas drilling in Michigan declined by 8% in 2013.

No permits applications to drill for oil were filed with the state Department of Environmental Quality in West Michigan communities last year, according to DEQ, according to state records reviewed by MLive.

“Oil drilling activity was down 8 percent across the state, according to the Oil and Gas News, a publication of the Michigan Oil and Gas Association. A total of 140 holes were drilled last year compared to 153 drilling completions in 2012, the publication said in its Jan. 10 weekly edition,” the report said.

There were no drilling permit applications last year in Kent, Ottawa, Allegan, Ionia and Barry counties, according to Richard Sandtveit, vice president of engineering for Trendwell Energy Corp., an E&P company that operates throughout Michigan

He “blamed the decline in part on an unsuccessful Ionia County well drilled in November 2012 by Rosetta Resources of Houston, Texas. Sandtveit said Rosetta plugged the well last year because it did not produce enough to justify its operation,” the MLive report said.

Most drilling last year in Michigan was in southeast corner of the Lower Peninsula, “where relatively shallow wells were successful in retrieving oil from the Trenton-Black River formations,” MLive said.

A group called Ban Michigan Fracking led a ballot initiative last year to ban fracking statewide. The initiative was defeated  but the group said it is still working toward the ban.


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