Environment, Education, Energy: Policy to People

What Scientists Know and Don’t Know About Disposal Well-Induced Earthquakes

Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Some earthquake seismologists say oil and natural gas disposal wells, like this one near Sparks, Okla., are likely triggering earthquakes in Oklahoma and other states in the mid-continent.

The 5.6-magnitude earthquake that shook Oklahoma in November 2011 was the state’s largest in at least a century.

And now the state is at the epicenter of a conversation about whether oil and natural gas production might be driving an increase in earthquakes in states throughout the mid-continent.

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