Mason residents debate proposed oil drilling

May 8, 2015

Dr. Jack Carmichael of Mason (left) and Rep. Tom Cochran (D-Mason) discussed proposed oil drilling.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

There’s no shortage of talk in Michigan about renewable energy sources. But despite all our efforts to go green, our state is still very dependent on fossil fuels. Recently, a Traverse City-based oil and gas company has been looking at an area in and around the city of Mason as a possible drilling site.

West Bay Exploration already operates two petroleum wells in Ingham County, both near Leslie. Now, the company is talking about subsurface lease rights with some Mason residents, and about half have already said yes. Others are still weighing their options.

Current State talks about West Bay's efforts to obtain lease rights in the Mason area with Democrat Tom Cochran, who represents Mason in the Michigan House of Representatives, and Dr. Jack Carmichael, a Mason resident who’s thinking the issue over.