I’m sitting here drinking my coffee on this very peaceful New Year’s Day in Jensen Beach. I woke up to an orange striped sky and Florida Fog. A new beginning. yay
I was going to write a blog post on what was trending since I went to bed last night and what caught my eye was #okquake.
Oklahoma’s first earthquake of the year.
I did a quick search and found.
Central Oklahoma has seen a massive increase in earthquakes in recent years, leading geological scientists to link the uptick in quakes to oil and gas development in the way of hydraulic fracking.
Fracking has long been associated with seismic activity, as researchers have shown connections between quakes and wastewater injection wells. The toxic wastewater is stored deep underground, causing friction along fault lines, scientists have found.
The injection wells used for oil and gas development are the “most reasonable hypothesis” to explain the earthquake uptick in Oklahoma, Nicholas van der Elst, a post-doctorate research fellow at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, told The Nation.
“The burden of proof is on well operators to prove that the earthquakes are not caused by their wells,” van der Elst said.
One 2011 study, published in the journal Geology, linked liquid infusion with earthquakes in the state, including the largest ever recorded in Oklahoma. The state has over 4,400 disposal wells, StateImpact reported.
a recent report found that some of the most drought-ravaged areas of the US are also heavily targeted for oil and gas development using fracking, a practice which exacerbates water usage.
Half of the 97 billion gallons of water used since 2011 for fracking have gone to wells in Texas, a state in the midst of a severe, years-long drought. Meanwhile, oil and gas production through fracking is on track to double in the state over the next five years, the Guardian reported.”
Before the oil and gas industry started drilling so many underground injection wells, they say, it was rare to feel an earthquake. Today, Oklahoma is the second-most seismically active state in the continental United States, behind California.
Now they have some fresh scientific evidence to back up their observations. Researchers from Cornell University and the University of Colorado say a large swarm of earthquakes in central Oklahoma was probably caused by activity at a few highly active disposal wells, where wastewater from drilling operations — including hydraulic fracturing — is forced into deep geological formations for storage.
Four high-rate disposal wells in southeast Oklahoma City probably induced a group of earthquakes known as the Jones swarm, which accounted for 20% of the seismicity in the central and eastern United States between 2008 and 2013, the team reported Thursday in the journal Science.
The Oklahoma Legislature is sending a message to towns, cities and counties: Don’t try to ban fracking.
Oklahoma legislators were inspired by the November 2014 voter-approved city fracking ban enacted in Denton, Texas. And, like their counterparts in Texas, they were determined to make such action illegal.
During the 2015 legislative session, at least eight bills were filed to prevent municipalities from creating rules or zoning regulations that would ban — or effectively ban — hydraulic fracturing and other oil and gas activities.
Oklahoma’s towns and cities are no longer allowed to ban fracking under a bill signed into law on Friday by Republican Gov. Mary Fallin.
The new law prohibits localities from choosing whether or not to have oil and gas operations within their jurisdictions, with exceptions for “reasonable” restrictions like noise and traffic issues. Other than that, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission will retain control over oil and gas drilling.
The state commission is run by three elected commissioners, all of whom are Republican. Chairman Bob Anthony is a member of the National Petroleum Council, a group that advises the U.S. Department of Energy on oil and gas industry interests. And Vice Chairman Dana Murphy is a geologist and attorney with “more than 22 years experience in the petroleum industry,” according to her bio page.
Texas has also done this.
In Florida the bills have been filed to do this.
This is not ok.
Our local control is being chipped at piece by piece.
People in Colorado are taking charge.
Back in September I wrote this
Things we don’t see on the tv: Sneaky fracking guys. Politicians. City of Ember. Will we get the sunshine we deserve?
Florida is doing the same thing. Just add this to a continuing list.
We need to wake up and start holding people’s feet to the fire before it’s too late.