Sandra Ladra in August filed the lawsuit against the operators of Lincoln County water disposal wells, claiming they caused the 5.6-magnitude earthquake that shook near Prague, Okla., in November 2011 “that caused rock from her fireplace to land in her lap and injure her knee,” The Oklahoman’s Adam Wilmoth reports.
Oklahoma’s earthquake surge is unrelenting. The shaking is rattling residents and cracking the foundations of homes.
The quakes have also strained state agencies, which are struggling to keep up with the ongoing swarm while simultaneously developing a longer-term plan to analyze and address factors that might be triggering the earthquakes.Continue Reading
Drought — and how to deal with it — was the central theme of the annual Oklahoma Governor’s Water Conference last week in Oklahoma City, where water experts and authorities discussed issues ranging from crop management to what Las Vegas can teach Oklahoma about water conservation.
Oklahoma Water Resources Board Executive Director J.D. Strong made the point again this year: The future looks like the past — hotter and drier — and no one should be surprised. Continue Reading
In May of last year, it looked like impoverished areas of eastern Oklahoma would be getting a lifeline. Coal mining, once a vital industry there, appeared to be headed for a comeback thanks to booming international demand.
Local residents were excited about the prospect of hundreds of new jobs when StateImpact first visited Heavener, but the mining project has stalled.Continue Reading
Members of the state Senate Finance Committee heard testimony on Tuesday from the wind industry and a representative of a group of property owners pushing for stricter regulation of wind farms.
The Senate study centered on the cost-benefit of tax credits and incentives used by the wind industry. Supporters said Oklahoma’s incentives attract projects that might otherwise be built in other states with similar wind potential, including sites in Kansas, Nebraska and Texas. Continue Reading
A second public hearing on what role the Corporation Commission should have in regulating the wind energy industry was held Oct. 15, and included discussions about “siting, landowner notification and decommissioning,” the Journal Record reports.
All the recent wet weather could lead some to think water conservation isn’t as necessary as it was at the peak of the drought, but state water experts are working make conservation a higher priority in the minds of Oklahomans. That includes encouraging water reuse and making conservation a year-round proposition.
Oklahoma’s earthquake surge and possible links to oil and gas activity have been studied in scientific papers, discussed at heated town-hall meetings and explored regulatory hearings.
The quakes are now triggering some rumblings at the state Capitol.Continue Reading
The eastern red cedar tree’s bad reputation for fueling wildfires, hogging water, and disrupting ecosystems in Oklahoma is drawing the attention of state lawmakers, but so are ways to put the tree to use, like to help fight cancer. Continue Reading
Here’s what seems like a mundane factoid about the Sooner State: Oklahoma leads the nation in gypsum mining.
Mildly interesting, right? Actually, it’s fascinating, as The Oklahoman‘s Mike Coppock explains:
The next time you bite down on a Twinkie, know there is a good chance part of it was mined out of a mesa south of Little Sahara State Park.
The same goes for the beer you may order at Bricktown or the loaf of bread you buy at the grocery store.
Oklahoma not only leads the nation in gypsum mining, but gypsum in Oklahoma is so pure that it is used as a calcium additive for foods we take for granted and in common medications.