Before the consistent, heavy rains over the past week, Waurika Lake — the main source of water for Lawton and Duncan — was on the very brink of drying up too much to be used. Years of punishing drought led to the crisis, but what a difference a few days can make. Continue Reading
Harold Hamm, the founder, chairman and CEO of Continental Resources, says he requested a meeting with a state seismologist to get information, not to “bully” a scientist tasked with studying an earthquake surge that has been linked to oil and gas activity.
EnergyWire’s Mike Soraghan reports:
In his first in-depth interview about his dealings with state officials on the issue of man-made earthquakes, the billionaire oilman said he knows that wastewater disposal can set the ground rumbling but said the practice of fracturing shouldn’t be associated with quakes.
Scientists say hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” can trigger earthquakes, but researchers suggest another oil and gas activity, the injection of waste fluid into disposal wells, is more likely behind the surge of earthquakes recorded in Oklahoma and other states. Continue Reading
The Oklahoma Corporation Commission in March ordered the operators of nearly 350 disposal wells to prove their operations weren’t allowing waste fluid to be pumped into a rock formation known to produce earthquakes.
The Corporation Commission has not provided comprehensive records or data related to the operators’ responses to the March directives despite multiple requests by StateImpact. Today, the commission issued a statement that provides a snapshot of the industry’s response to the directives:
Data from March show oil and gas activity in Oklahoma fell to a four-year low. One economist expects the slowdown to continue for at least 6 months, The Oklahoman reports.
The right-to-farm bill survived Oklahoma’s legislative process last week. That means voters will have a chance to decide next year whether to give farmers and ranchers broad protections against future state laws that might interfere with their operations.
But opponents say right-to-farm is a license that allows big ag to harm animals and the environment. But where do actual Oklahoma farmers and ranchers stand on the issue?
Scientists say oil and gas activity is likely responsible for much of the earthquake activity that has surged in Oklahoma since 2009.
Seismologists, regulators, lawmakers, oil industry experts and everyday Oklahomans trying to understand the earthquake phenomenon — known as “induced seismicity” — face two seemingly contradictory observations: Oklahoma has a long history of oil and gas production, and the recent period of increased earthquake activity is comparatively short. Continue Reading
The Oklahoma Geological Survey recently revised its formal position on Oklahoma’s exponential surge in earthquake activity, acknowledging for the first time in a official public statement that most of the seismic activity recently recorded in the state was linked to oil and gas activity. Continue Reading
Les Stockton / Flickr
Significant relief from the four-plus year drought has finally arrived in southwest Oklahoma. The Oklahoma Climatological Society reports this April was the 17th wettest on record, and the second wettest in history for the west-central part of the state. Continue Reading
The Oklahoma House and Senate have advanced legislation to prevent cities, towns and counties from banning fracking and other oil and gas activities.
At least one of the bills will likely end up on the governor’s desk, but even in its unsigned, non-finalized form, the legislation is affecting local regulation.
With concern over drought at a high point and plans to get water from southeast Oklahoma falling through, the City of Norman decided in 2014 to pursue a plan to clean water that has been used by customers and return it to Lake Thunderbird — the city’s main water source — to be used again.
There’s a growing trend toward wastewater reuse to combat drought and conserve water sources for the future, but not everyone is comfortable with the idea of drinking what is, in essence, retreated toilet water. And Norman isn’t the only city that relies on Lake Thunderbird for its drinking water. Continue Reading