Geophysical Research Letters
Click here to read a .pdf of the study, "Earthquake hypocenters and focal mechanisms in central Oklahoma reveal a complex system of reactivated subsurface strike-slip faulting."
The faults responsible for thousands of earthquakes in Oklahoma are capable of producing larger earthquakes, according to a new study.
These “reactivated” faults were formed roughly 300 million years ago and are well known for creating underground structures that “trap” oil and natural gas, the U.S. Geological Survey wrote in a statement about the new research.
A primary reason for reactivation is the northeast or northwest orientation of the faults relative to the east to west direction of regional tectonic stress in earth’s upper crust, which increases the probability of a future, larger earthquake.
A Lockheed WC-130B used by U.S. government researchers Stormfury, a cloud seeding research project focused on reducing the strength of hurricanes.
Five years of drought has strangled lakes and reservoirs in southwestern Oklahoma.
The city of Lawton is considering extraordinary means to help fill water supplies. City leaders hope a man with an airplane can manipulate the weather and bring more rain.
The Oklahoma House of Representatives on Monday voted 89-0 to approve proposed legislation that would significantly reduce the amount of tax incentives paid to the wind industry.
House Bill 1554 was authored by Rep. Earl Sears, R-Bartlesville, who has pledged to curtail tax credits and incentives whose cost has ballooned along with Oklahoma’s booming wind industry.
From the Associated Press:
Sears said the bill in its current form would reduce by about 70 percent the amount of tax credits wind producers receive, although he acknowledged discussions with the industry are ongoing on the final amount. The credits are paid based on the amount of electricity produced by the facilities.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma
Austin Holland with the Oklahoma Geological Survey briefs Corporation Commissioners on new earthquake research.
Despite long-held suspicions that the state’s earthquake surge was linked to oil and gas activity, the Oklahoma Geological Survey stayed silent amid pressure from oil company executives, EnergyWire reports. Continue Reading
matthileo / Flickr
Earthquake magnitude estimations often vary wildly between the Oklahoma Geological Survey and the U.S. Geological Survey.
The OGS usually reports smaller earthquakes than its federal counterpart. Since 2010, the OGS reported smaller numbers than the USGS “more than half of the time for earthquakes of magnitude 3.8 and higher,” the Tulsa World’s Ziva Branstetter and Curtis Killman report.
There are two basic ways to calculate earthquake magnitude. The local magnitude, also known as the Richter scale, is accurate for smaller quakes, while moment magnitude is generally used for larger quakes but is more difficult to compute, according to the USGS.
A panel discussion at the University of Tulsa’s College of Law urged “greater transparency, collaboration and community involvement if the state is to realize its potential as one of the nation’s biggest wind producers,” Paul Monies reports.
Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma
Tammy and Rick Huffstutlar have spoken out against wind farm development near their home in Calument, Okla.
A bill adding new regulations and oversight of Oklahoma’s booming wind industry passed a House committee on Tuesday.
House Bill 1549, one of several bills filed in the 2015 Legislature that target the wind industry, places limits on where companies can build new wind farms. The proposed measure would prevent new wind farms from being built near schools, hospitals or airports.
The bill was written by Rep. Earl Sears, R-Bartlesville. He says landowners and the wind industry were consulted when crafting the legislation. Continue Reading
Story from NPR about worries that energy industry banks in Oklahoma and other states aren’t prepared for prolonged low oil prices.
More than 2,500 insurance professionals in Oklahoma have completed a one-hour class on earthquake coverage, The Oklahoman’s Adam Wilmoth reports.
"Coping with earthquakes induced by fluid injection," was published Feb. 20, 2014 in the journal Science.
A new peer-reviewed paper published in the journal Science urges greater partnership between industry, government agencies and researchers in responding to the consequences of earthquakes triggered by oil and gas activity.
The paper, authored by the U.S. Geological Survey and other federal scientists, as well as state seismologists, including the Oklahoma Geological Survey’s Austin Holland, also endorsed more transparency:
For purposes of transparency and avoiding public distrust, it is important to put the results of these seismic network operations into the public domain in near real time. Even if a network is owned and operated by industry, regulators must ensure that seismic data are not withheld from the public.
and more public involvement: Continue Reading