We, Nopaxton.com, are a growing group of Lodi and Saline residents that are concerned about the impact that oil and gas drilling and associated operations may have on our land and environment. Those who live here appreciate the natural beauty, clean water and air, and relative peace and quiet, and want to keep it that way. Based on substantial freely and publicly available information, it is clear that exploitation of oil, gas, and other mineral resources under our land may result in a variety of unintended, unwelcome side-effects, and we do not intend to allow that to happen.

If you live in Lodi or Saline and have been approached by a company calling itself Paxton Resources, or are concerned about potential side-effects of oil and gas drilling on your or your neighbors properties and want to learn more, please contact us at: nopaxton at gmail dot com

Saturday, March 31, 2012

City of Saline Sells Water to Oil Companies, Deep Injection Disposal Well Planned for Norvel Township

This excellent article from Sean Dalton at Heritage Newspapers (March 26, 2012) provides some recent updates on the situation.  Commissioner Prater and Washtenaw County are coming to the situation with open ears and minds and are very concerned.  Some of the scarier things going on include the City of Saline selling water to the oil companies for drilling, and that there are plans for a deep injection waste well in Norvell Township (a couple miles West of Manchester)!!  Folks, it gets scarier and scarier - is a major disposal site next for Lodi and Saline Township?  And why is the City of Saline assisting in generating risks to our land, air, and water out here in the townships?  Folks, it's time to speak up!  See the entire article here:

Friday, March 30, 2012

Seismic Testing in the Saline Township Area

It has been noticed by neighbors in the Austin/Dell/Grass area that surveying stakes have been going up all over the place this week.  Apparently, Paxton and their subcontractors are attempting to mark off territory so that they can perform additional seismic testing.  The purpose of the testing is undoubtedly to identify pockets of oil.   While the flags run across many fields and directions, a neighbor found the map of Saline township below.  It is assumed that the green areas are those that have already signed leases, the yellow are areas that have given permission to test (but not necessarily signed leases), and the red are those that have not given any permission or signed leases.  We apologize for the quality of the image, but it should be fairly obvious if compared with Google Maps or eWashtenaw site or this map of Saline Township

Saline Township starts just south of 7980 Grass Rd. so about 1/3 of Grass Rd. is in Saline Township and the part north of this address is in Lodi township.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Paxton Resources Denied Lease of Land by Washtenaw County Road Commission

Since at least December 2011, Paxton Resources has sought to lease a small parcel of land from the Washtenaw County Road Commission for inclusion into a new drilling unit just south of downtown Saline.  A lease was being negotiated between Paxton and a representative of the Commission, and the lease was placed on the "consent" agenda for March 20, 2012.  While the size of the parcel is supposedly small relative to the overall unit, obtaining a lease from the County was important to Paxton, as without it they must either not drill in this area or go through legal proceedings to execute "compulsory pooling."

Nopaxton.com members attended the March 20 meeting to convey additional information to the Commissioners so that they could make the most well informed decision possible on the lease and to convey their opposition.  Some highlights included:

  • A local citizen showing off a lease he received from Paxton Resources - notarized but without any signature!  Commissioners were surprised someone would engage in such practices, with a legal advisor stating that it was clearly not good practice.    The citizen conveyed that it was his feeling that this was representative of the manner in which Paxton conducts business.
  • Another citizen talking about the stench from the current wells that Paxton Resources owns and operates in the area, and how when he bikes through the area he feels sorry for those that must live with the air pollution.
  • A Washtenaw County Commissioner expressing his frustration with the DEQ and their seeming inability to respond to Washtenaw County's requests for information.  The Commissioner (Mr. Wes Prater) decried the State's attempts to strip the powers of local government to protect its citizens, conveyed that he believes there are significant questions to be answered, and did not support the leasing of Washtenaw County land to Paxton Resources.
  • Mr. Greg Vadnais, who works for Paxton Resources and is the son of one of the owners, expressing how he was surprised that the lease was open for public consideration as it was on the "consent agenda."
  • Mr. Vadnais also claimed that he had heard no complaints about their work, was unaware that unsigned notarized documents were being sent out, and claimed that any accusations were simply cherry- picked statements or things that occurred a long time ago.  He also used the phrase, "throw you under the bus" when referring to the County Road Commission and Paxton's plans to go forward regardless of the desires of the Commission or the concerned citizens.

The Commission voted a unanimous "NO" on leasing the property, and the lease was turned down.  We'll see whether Paxton Resources chooses to subvert the decision of the Board and the desire of the local citizenry by attempting to force the issue via compulsory pooling.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Paxton Resources Requests Lease from Washtenaw County Road Commission

We apologize for the short notice.  No Paxton has just been made aware of a Washtenaw County Road Commission meeting at 1pm on Tuesday March 20.  One of the agenda items will be the leasing of land owned by the Road Commission to Paxton Resources.  We plan to attend and voice our concerns. 

For more information on the location of the meeting please see 

Leasing May Make It Difficult To Obtain Financing

We will no longer be financing homes with gas leases,” Jennifer
Jackson, Program Director for Rural Loans, US Department of
Agriculture, New York office.

As awareness about the potential contamination and downsides of oil and gas drilling grows, so too will the reluctance by banks and financial institutions to finance properties around which this is occurring. The title quote comes from a March 18, 2012 NYT article that you can read below:

Correction: Monday March 19 Lodi Twp. Meeting Starts at 7pm

The oil and gas educational meeting at the Lodi Township hall starts at 7pm tonight Monday March 19 and not 7:30pm.  We apologize for any confusion caused by the original notice which stated 7:30pm in the title.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Reminder - Lodi Township Meeting Monday March 19 7:00PM

Just a  reminder to please attend the oil and gas education session on:

Monday, March 19, 2012 7:00 p.m.

Lodi Township Hall
2755 Pleasant Lake Rd.
Ann Arbor, MI 48103

Guest speakers include:
  • Curtis Talley Jr., MSU Extension Area Farm Mgmt Educator
  • An area Attorney with experience in Oil & Gas Leases
  • DEQ Representative to address regulations
  • Matt Kapp, Michigan Farm Bureau Land Use Specialist
Oil and Gas Education For Landowners

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Will leasing impact your property value?

This short article, from Steve Coffman of Dundee, NY, points out a few of the issues associated with leases and their impact on property values and bank financing. It's focused on gas drilling in the NY area but applies here in Washtenaw County in very much the same way...

Will Leasing Depress Your Property Values?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Oil and Gas Lease Educational Program Monday / 7PM March 19 Lodi Township Hall

Monday, March 19, 2012  7:00 p.m.

Lodi Township Hall
2755 Pleasant Lake Rd.
Ann Arbor, MI  48103

Guest speakers include:
  • Curtis Talley Jr., MSU Extension Area Farm Mgmt Educator
  • An area Attorney with experience in Oil & Gas Leases
  • DEQ Representative to address regulations
  • Matt Kapp, Michigan Farm Bureau Land Use Specialist
Oil and Gas Education For Landowners

Myths and Realities of Oil/Gas Development from our friends in Ohio!

NEOGAP is an Ohio-based group that follows the issues surrounding oil
and gas development (particularly in Ohio) and has a wealth of
excellent information on thier website. I encourage everyone to check
out http://www.neogap.org/. I also encourage folks to review this
article from NEOGAP:

Myths and Realities of Oil/Gas Development 

Again, this document focuses on Ohio but much of it applies here.
They hit topics like safety, contamination, inadequate staffing of
State inspectors, whether or not this will help defer our dependence
on middle-east oil, and more. It's also a well-referenced document.

Wall Street Journal reports on latest development in fracking wells and contaminated water supplies....

Findings may indicate faulty well construction rather than the fracking method itself.  If subterranean cement seals or casings have been improperly constructed, contaminants can leak into the shallower aquifer layer or to the surface.

Oil wells are typically constructed in a similar manner using cement poured into cavities to isolate the well bore.

Environmental Defense Fund spokesperson estimates that 1 in 10 wells fail due to badly constructed cement seals.

Read the full WSJ entry here: Faulty Wells, Not Fracking, Blamed for Water Pollution