fracking http://michiganradio.org en Public hearings on proposed "fracking" rules wraps up, ballot campaign could follow http://michiganradio.org/post/public-hearings-proposed-fracking-rules-wraps-ballot-campaign-could-follow <p>State environmental regulators will put the finishing touches on new rules regarding “fracking” now that public hearings have wrapped up. They expect to have the new rules adopted by the end of the year, but the state’s rules may not be the final word on the controversial drilling process</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">“Fracking”</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> is a drilling method that pushes water and chemicals into wells to force out oil and gas deposits.</span></p> Thu, 17 Jul 2014 18:58:15 +0000 Rick Pluta 18415 at http://michiganradio.org Public hearings on proposed "fracking" rules wraps up, ballot campaign could follow DEQ holding public hearings on fracking rules tonight and Wednesday http://michiganradio.org/post/deq-holding-public-hearings-fracking-rules-tonight-and-wednesday <p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.1500000000000001;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:10pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-60815f06-39fe-fe7a-e87f-7c0eae242181"><span style="font-size: 19px; font-family: Calibri; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap; background-color: transparent;">State officials want to hear what you think about fracking.</span></span></p><p><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 19px; white-space: pre-wrap; line-height: 1.1500000000000001; background-color: transparent;">The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality wants to update the state’s rules on hydraulic fracturing. The DEQ is</span><span style="font-family: Calibri; font-size: 19px; white-space: pre-wrap; line-height: 1.1500000000000001; background-color: transparent;"> holding two public hearings this week on the proposed changes.</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.1500000000000001;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:10pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-60815f06-39fe-fe7a-e87f-7c0eae242181"><span style="font-size: 19px; font-family: Calibri; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap; background-color: transparent;">Hal Fitch is the chief of the <a href="http://www.michigan.gov/deq/0,4561,7-135-3306_57064---,00.html">DEQ’s Office of Oil, Gas and Minerals</a>. </span></span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.1500000000000001;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:10pt;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-60815f06-39fe-fe7a-e87f-7c0eae242181"><span style="font-size: 19px; font-family: Calibri; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap; background-color: transparent;">“Starting about 2008, we started hearing increased public concerns. So we met with the environmental community, we met with the public in over 200 different forums and heard those concerns and formulated these rules based on what we were hearing,” he says.</span></span></p><p> Tue, 15 Jul 2014 12:46:11 +0000 Rebecca Williams 18375 at http://michiganradio.org DEQ holding public hearings on fracking rules tonight and Wednesday New report gathers opinions on fracking in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/new-report-gathers-opinions-fracking-michigan <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">What do the people who run Michigan's towns and cities think about the prospect of high-volume hydraulic fracturing, or "</span>fracking" in or near their communities<span style="line-height: 1.5;">?</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A <a href="http://closup.umich.edu/michigan-public-policy-survey/33/fracking-as-a-community-issue-in-michigan/">new report </a>from the University of Michigan's Center for Local, State and Urban Policy looks into that question.</span></p><p>In Michigan, only a handful of communities report some type of high-volume&nbsp;fracking operation. It's the controversial process used to extract natural gas by drilling into shale deposits.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The center’s program director, Tom </span>Ivacko<span style="line-height: 1.5;">, joined us to talk about the results.</span></p><p><em style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 15px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Georgia, Times, serif; line-height: 22px;">*Listen to the interview above.</em></p><p></p><p> Thu, 05 Jun 2014 22:18:13 +0000 Stateside Staff 17881 at http://michiganradio.org New report gathers opinions on fracking in Michigan Watchdog groups wary of proposed fracking rules http://michiganradio.org/post/watchdog-groups-wary-proposed-fracking-rules <p><strong>This story has been updated. 5/9/2014</strong></p><p>New rules proposed for oil and gas drilling in Michigan are getting a mixed response, at best, from watchdog groups. The rules would apply to a type of drilling often referred to as “fracking.” Critics say the proposed changes continue to favor the oil and gas industry over neighbors and the public.</p><p>The official line in Michigan has long been that drilling for oil and gas is well-regulated and done safely. But many people are not convinced.</p><p>Hal Fitch is the head of the Office of Oil, Gas and Minerals. He says they are responding to those concerns.</p><p>"We saw some need to make some changes, some improvements, partly because of changing technology, partly because of public concern out there over hydraulic fracturing," he says.</p><p> Tue, 06 May 2014 12:50:00 +0000 Peter Payette 17490 at http://michiganradio.org Watchdog groups wary of proposed fracking rules Michigan proposes updates to "fracking" rules for oil and gas drillers http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-proposes-updates-fracking-rules-oil-and-gas-drillers <p>The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is proposing changes to their rules for oil and gas drilling in the state.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">MDEQ&nbsp;leaders say they've had a successful record regulating the practice of hydraulic fracturing in the state for more than five decades, but new practices by the oil and gas industry are leading to the rule changes.</span></p> Tue, 29 Apr 2014 21:04:08 +0000 Mark Brush & Lindsey Smith 17404 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan proposes updates to "fracking" rules for oil and gas drillers Anger, concern over petroleum drilling in Scio Township http://michiganradio.org/post/anger-concern-over-petroleum-drilling-scio-township <p>"How many of you are here to stop the drilling?" one woman asked the crowd of about 200 at a town forum in Scio Township last night.</p><p>Big applause broke out.</p><p>It was the first indication that the crowd was not going to be a friendly one for the executives from West Bay Exploration, a Traverse City-based drilling company that has asked several landowners in Scio Township to sign over leases for their mineral rights.</p><p>The town forum was billed as an opportunity to "become educated about oil and gas leasing."</p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 14:58:20 +0000 Kate Wells 17357 at http://michiganradio.org Anger, concern over petroleum drilling in Scio Township Will proposed regulations change fracking in Michigan? http://michiganradio.org/post/will-proposed-regulations-change-fracking-michigan <p>Michigan’s Department of Environmental Quality proposed a list of new rules for hydraulic fracturing in the state — commonly known as fracking.</p><p>Fracking is a process where developers pump high-pressure streams of water and chemicals into a well to clear a path to hard-to-reach deposits of natural gas.</p><p>So just what are these proposed new rules? And what could they mean to the future of fracking in Michigan?</p><p>James Clift is the policy director of the Michigan Environmental Council. He joins us to discuss the new regulations.</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.&nbsp;</em></p><p> Thu, 07 Nov 2013 21:41:00 +0000 Stateside Staff 15182 at http://michiganradio.org Will proposed regulations change fracking in Michigan? Jack Lessenberry talks Detroit bankruptcy, NERD fund and fracking http://michiganradio.org/post/jack-lessenberry-talks-detroit-bankruptcy-nerd-fund-and-fracking <p>In this <em>Week in Michigan Politics, </em>Christina Shockley and Jack Lessenberry discuss Detroit's bankruptcy eligibility trial, Governor Snyder's <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/governor-snyder-shutting-down-controversial-nerd-fund">NERD fund</a>, and new proposed <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/state-proposes-new-fracking-rules">fracking rules</a>.</p><p> Wed, 23 Oct 2013 12:39:07 +0000 Jack Lessenberry, Christina Shockley & Emily Fox 14958 at http://michiganradio.org Jack Lessenberry talks Detroit bankruptcy, NERD fund and fracking In this morning's headlines: Detroit bankruptcy trial and fracking rules http://michiganradio.org/post/mornings-headlines-detroit-bankruptcy-trial-and-fracking-rules <p><strong>Bankruptcy eligibility trial begins today</strong></p><p>"A trial to determine Detroit’s fate in municipal bankruptcy starts today. Judge Steven Rhodes will hear arguments about whether the city qualifies for Chapter Nine protection," Sarah Cwiek reports.</p><p><strong>Judge says Detroit EM candidate names&nbsp; should be revealed </strong></p><p>"A Wayne County judge has ruled that state officials must turn over a list of possible candidates for the Detroit emergency manager job," Cwiek <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/state-must-release-names-candidates-considered-detroit-emergency-manager-job">reports. </a>This comes after a union activist filed a lawsuit saying the state violated the Open Meeting Act when it appointed Detroit's emergency manager Kevyn Orr.</p><p><strong>DEQ proposes new rules for fracking</strong></p><p>The Department of Environmental Quality has proposed new rules for fracking in Michigan. "The rules will require disclosure of chemicals used by developers, and make it easier for people to track where “fracking” is occurring," Rick Pluta <a href="http://michiganradio.org/post/state-proposes-new-fracking-rules">reports</a></p><p> Wed, 23 Oct 2013 11:42:19 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 14956 at http://michiganradio.org In this morning's headlines: Detroit bankruptcy trial and fracking rules A lot can go wrong with a petition drive, but Right to Life has mastered the art of the initiative http://michiganradio.org/post/lot-can-go-wrong-petition-drive-right-life-has-mastered-art-initiative <p dir="ltr" id="docs-internal-guid-740bc126-a890-a5c7-b059-8c1e0f9951a8" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">The petition drive is the citizens&rsquo; direct route to changing laws. It&rsquo;s part of the state constitution,</span><a href="http://www.legislature.mi.gov/%28S%28htqdyl45oyyhzu45j0b45a45%29%29/mileg.aspx?page=getObject&amp;objectName=mcl-Article-II-9" style="text-decoration:none;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;"> </span><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#1155cc;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:underline;vertical-align:baseline;">Article 2, Section 9</span></a><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;"> (if you want to read it for yourself). The petition-initiated law is not subject to a veto by the governor. If the Legislature refuses to adopt it, the decision goes to voters as a statewide ballot question.</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">Right to Life of Michigan submitted petitions a week ago to initiate a law that would say people could no longer get abortion coverage as part of a basic health insurance plan. Consumers would have to buy separate coverage to get abortions paid for. The only exception would be an emergency abortion necessary to save a woman&rsquo;s life.</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">&ldquo;I had a similar bill that came to me that I vetoed,&rdquo; Governor Rick Snyder reminded folks after the petitions were filed. &ldquo;And that was the right answer in my view.&rdquo;</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">Snyder vetoed this language when it was part of a bill sent to him last year by the Legislature because it did not include those rape and incest exceptions. That&rsquo;s despite the fact that he has identified himself as &ldquo;pro-life,&rdquo; that is opposed to abortion, when he ran in &nbsp;2010.</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr" style="line-height:1.15;margin-top:0pt;margin-bottom:0pt;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">But not sufficiently so for Right to Life (which</span><a href="http://www.mlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2010/06/right_to_life_endorses_mike_co.html" style="text-decoration:none;"><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;"> </span><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#1155cc;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:underline;vertical-align:baseline;">endorsed</span></a><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;"> another candidate in the 2010 Republican primary.) Right to Life has a ready response when governors veto legislation it supports. So, once again, Right to Life launched a petition drive to enact as an initiated law what Snyder had</span><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:italic;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;"> </span><span style="font-size:16px;font-family:Arial;color:#000000;background-color:transparent;font-weight:normal;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:none;vertical-align:baseline;">vetoed.</span> Fri, 11 Oct 2013 17:46:34 +0000 Rick Pluta & Zoe Clark 14819 at http://michiganradio.org A lot can go wrong with a petition drive, but Right to Life has mastered the art of the initiative Couple fighting oil, gas development in state game area http://michiganradio.org/post/couple-fighting-oil-gas-development-state-game-area <p>GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) - A southwestern Michigan couple is suing the federal government over a planned lease of oil and gas development rights in the Allegan State Game Area.<br><br>John Davis Jr. and Marybeth Pritschet-Davis filed their lawsuit Thursday in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids.<br><br>They say the Bureau of Land Management plans to auction 27,302 acres of subsurface mineral rights in the Allegan game area Sept. 12. The area hosts endangered and threatened species and also features trout streams, lakes and wetlands.<br> Sat, 07 Sep 2013 18:00:00 +0000 The Associated Press 14320 at http://michiganradio.org Judge dismisses lawsuit aimed at stopping 'fracking' in West Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/judge-dismisses-lawsuit-aimed-stopping-fracking-west-michigan <p>A judge dismissed a lawsuit seeking to stop any oil and gas drilling on state land in western Michigan.</p><p>The area in question is&nbsp;Allegan&nbsp;State Game Area, the Barry State Game Reserve and Yankee Springs Parks and Recreation Area.</p><p>Yvonne Zip reports for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.mlive.com/news/kalamazoo/index.ssf/2013/08/circuit_court_judge_dismisses.html">MLive&nbsp;</a>that a group called "Michigan Air Land Water Defense" filed the lawsuit last October. The group said the state should first assess the environmental impacts of horizontal hydraulic fracturing on public land.</p><p>Zip reports that Barry County Judge Amy McDowell said the lawsuit is jumping the gun:</p><blockquote><p>In her opinion, McDowell called the plaintiffs' claims premature, since the leases auctioned were classified as non-developmental, which means that no surface drilling can occur without an application to the state for a change of status.</p><p>"As asserted by Defendants, the mere act of leasing oil and gas rights, in and of itself, does not constitute actual or imminent injury," wrote McDowell. "If the DNR initially classified that lease as 'developmental' or 'developmental with restrictions' prior to a review of the impact on protected areas, then this Court may have reached a different conclusion."</p><p>So far, no reclassification permit has been sought by a lessee, so the plaintiffs failed to establish "actual or imminent injury," the judge wrote.</p> Mon, 19 Aug 2013 17:01:25 +0000 Mark Brush 14050 at http://michiganradio.org Judge dismisses lawsuit aimed at stopping 'fracking' in West Michigan Fracking and the environment: what do scientists know so far? http://michiganradio.org/post/fracking-and-environment-what-do-scientists-know-so-far <div class="content-left" style="display: block;"><aside class="toggler"><div class="related-sidebar-meat"><div class="migration-masher"><p>As the national debate around horizontal hydraulic fracturing continues, one of the central questions is: what does the practice do to our environment?</p><p>Abrahm Lustgarten is an energy reporter with ProPublica. He's covered fracking extensively, and he recently wrote a <a href="http://www.propublica.org/article/epas-abandoned-wyoming-fracking-study-one-retreat-of-many">piece </a>investigating the Environmental Protection Agency's decision to back away from several studies on fracking.</p><p> Thu, 08 Aug 2013 12:55:05 +0000 Rebecca Williams 13890 at http://michiganradio.org Fracking and the environment: what do scientists know so far? Michigan Chamber of Commerce steps into fracking debate http://michiganradio.org/post/michigan-chamber-commerce-steps-fracking-debate <p>The Michigan Chamber of Commerce is getting into the debate over horizontal hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.</p><p>Fracking pumps a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into a well under high pressure to force open shale rock formations and extract natural gas. Vertical fracking has been done in Michigan for decades. But horizontal fracking is much newer, and it uses a larger amount of chemicals and millions of gallons of water per well. (For more information, check out Lester Graham's article, "<a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/fracking-natural-gas-benefits-and-risks">Fracking for natural gas, the benefits and the risks</a>.")</p><p>The Chamber of Commerce has launched a <a href="http://www.michamber.com/energyindependence">campaign </a>they’re calling “Protect Michigan’s Energy Future.”</p><p> Thu, 08 Aug 2013 12:55:00 +0000 Rebecca Williams 13889 at http://michiganradio.org Michigan Chamber of Commerce steps into fracking debate Up to 500 wells could be drilled in northern Michigan under fracking proposal http://michiganradio.org/post/500-wells-could-be-drilled-northern-michigan-under-fracking-proposal <p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;"><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;">LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A proposal to drill as many as 500 wells in Michigan's northern Lower Peninsula by using hydraulic fracturing is attracting attention and criticism from environmentalists.</span><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;">Encana Corp., which has drilled about a dozen wells since 2009, has proposed the new wells, <a href="http://bit.ly/1aSiZB5">The Detroit News reported</a>, and spokesman Doug Hock says the company is "in the early stages" of new drilling in Michigan.</span><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;">Until "we do the exploration, we won't know whether we have something that can scale up and be economic," Hock said.</span><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><br style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;"><span style="color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: arial; font-size: small;">Calgary, Alberta-based Encana is focusing on Michigan's Antrim and Collingwood shale formations, which run from the tip of the Lower Peninsula to the middle of the state. The company's mineral rights are mostly in Cheboygan, Emmet, Kalkaska and Missaukee counties.</span></p><p style="margin-top: 9px; margin-bottom: 9px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; color: rgb(68, 78, 92); font-family: Georgia, serif; line-height: normal;"> Mon, 29 Jul 2013 16:23:17 +0000 The Associated Press 13733 at http://michiganradio.org Up to 500 wells could be drilled in northern Michigan under fracking proposal New legislation calls for more regulations on 'fracking' in Michigan http://michiganradio.org/post/new-legislation-calls-more-regulations-fracking-michigan <p>Democrats in the state House are calling for more state regulations on hydraulic fracturing – or “fracking” in Michigan. Fracking releases oil and gas from deep underground by cracking open rock with a high-pressure mix of water, fine sand and chemicals pumped into wells.</p><p>The state has seen an influx of energy producers since companies started using this controversial process to extract natural gas.</p><p>Democratic state Representative Sarah Roberts is a co-sponsor of this package of eight bills. She represents the 18th District from St Clair Shores. She joined us today to talk about 'fracking.'</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Mon, 15 Jul 2013 21:21:32 +0000 Stateside Staff 13531 at http://michiganradio.org New legislation calls for more regulations on 'fracking' in Michigan Stateside for Monday, July 15th, 2013 http://michiganradio.org/post/stateside-monday-july-15th-2013 <p>Democrats in the state House have introduced a package of bills that would add more state regulations to the process of hydraulic fracturing, or ‘fracking.’ We spoke to a co-sponsor of the legislation on today's show.</p><p>And, as the use of meth makes headlines across the state, we talked to one woman about her recovery and what she's doing for other addicts.</p><p>And, it’s going to be a hot week for Michiganders. We took a look at what health concerns are related to the increased temperatures.</p><p>Also, we spoke with Gary Whelan of the State Department of Natural Resources about what is being done to keep the Great Lakes stocked with fish.</p><p>First on the show, t<span style="line-height: 1.5;">he debate over expanding Medicaid in Michigan continues.</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Governor Snyder is still pushing for the state Senate to vote on the legislation. It would expand Medicaid to hundreds of thousands of low-income adults in the state. The state House has already approved it.</span></p><p>Over the weekend, Mark Schauer waded into the debate.</p><p>Schauer – a Democrat – is running for Governor in 2014. He said on Saturday that he does not understand why Governor Snyder is not calling the Legislature into a special session.</p><p>Rick Pluta and Zoe Clark, Michigan Radio’s “It’s Just Politics” team, joined us today to answer Mark Shauer’s question.</p><p> Mon, 15 Jul 2013 21:17:23 +0000 Stateside Staff 13543 at http://michiganradio.org Stateside for Monday, July 15th, 2013 State House Democrats want to tighten regulations on 'fracking' http://michiganradio.org/post/state-house-democrats-want-tighten-regulations-fracking <p>Eight Democrats in the Michigan House are introducing legislation to tighten regulations on a practice used by the oil and gas industry known as hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking."</p><p>The drilling technique is at the center of national environmental debates. It uses water and chemicals deep underground to harvest natural gas.</p> Fri, 12 Jul 2013 14:44:31 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 13491 at http://michiganradio.org State House Democrats want to tighten regulations on 'fracking' In this morning’s news: farm bill, fracking, and Arab-American bank accounts http://michiganradio.org/post/morning-s-news-farm-bill-fracking-and-arab-american-bank-accounts <p><strong>U.S. House revisits Farm Bill</strong></p><p>United States House Republicans passed a farm bill yesterday that excludes food assistance legislation.&nbsp; Agriculture and food stamps have historically been a part of the same bill for nearly 40 years. Michigan Radio’s Steve Carmody <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/michigan-farm-bureau-not-happy-us-house-passed-farm-bill">reports</a> that the Michigan Farm Bureau is disappointed with the status of the new legislation.&nbsp;</p><p><strong>State Democrats increase fracking regulation</strong></p><p>Democrats in the state House have introduced eight new bills to increase regulations on hydraulic <a href="http://www.michiganradio.org/post/state-house-democrats-want-regulate-fracking">fracturing</a> in Michigan. The bills do not ban fracking or stop the issuing of permits. According to Michigan Public Radio’s Jake Neher, “the legislation would require natural gas companies to disclose which chemicals they’re using in the fracking process. It would also give local governments more power to restrict the activity.”</p><p><strong>Arab-American group sues over bank account closures</strong></p><p>Hundreds of Arab-Americans received letters from Huntington Bank notifying them that their accounts have been closed.&nbsp; Many of these closures came with no explanation. The Arab-American Civil Rights League has filed a $75,000 lawsuit against the bank. Fri, 12 Jul 2013 12:53:16 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 13504 at http://michiganradio.org In this morning’s news: farm bill, fracking, and Arab-American bank accounts Horizontal hydraulic fracturing also controversial in Europe http://michiganradio.org/post/horizontal-hydraulic-fracturing-also-controversial-europe <p>Horizontal hydraulic fracturing has caused a boom in gas drilling in our state and country, but Michigan and the U.S. are certainly not the only places on the planet dealing with fracking. It's starting to be an issue in Europe, as well.</p><p>BBC Business reporter Russell Padmore joined us today to talk about how fracking is affecting England, France, Germany, and other countries. &nbsp;</p><p><em>Listen to the full interview above.</em></p><p> Tue, 25 Jun 2013 21:43:49 +0000 Stateside Staff 13239 at http://michiganradio.org