From the Associated Press:
A judge has dismissed a lawsuit seeking to prevent oil and gas drilling on state land in western Michigan, saying the challenge is premature.
Barry County Judge Amy McDowell says the "mere act" of approving leases doesn't mean there's an imminent threat to the environment. She says lease holders still would need to apply to the state if they want to drill.
MLive.com (http://bit.ly/13zxLNA) says critics sued over the leases, claiming Michigan first needs to assess the environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing or "fracking." It involves pumping water, sand and chemicals underground to break open shale rock and release natural gas.
The lawsuit mentions leases in the Allegan State Game Area, the Barry State Game Reserve and Yankee Springs Parks and Recreation Area.
Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.
Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.
Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.
The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.
Earthjustice, a national eco-group.
People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.
Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.
No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.
Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.
Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.
Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.