4 thoughts on “Study: Oklahoma 5.7 earthquake may be associated with fracking”

  1. Dear Mr. Milloy,

    According to Seth Borenstein’s AP story today, “The waste was from traditional drilling, not from the hydraulic fracturing technique,or fracking.”

    Unless you have solid information contradicting both the original study and Borenstein’s AP piece, it is poor journalism to assert, without evidence, that “The injected water was likely wastewater from fracking.”

    I respectfully request that you correct your headline to read something like “Oklahoma 5.7 Earthquake not associated with fracking; waste water injection well suspected.”

    I would think it would be uncomfortable for you to take a position (in contradiction to the facts) which is even more alarmist than Seth Borenstein.

  2. Dear Mr. Milloy,

    I believe your headline should be re-worded, since it is incorrect.

    I read the study to which you link. The study clearly refers to a waste water disposal well. NOT a hydraulic fracturing operation on an oil and gas well.

    The two operations – waste water disposal and hydraulic fracturing – are quite distinct and should not be conflated in the mind.

    There has been so much hysteria about “fracking” that it does not aid the public dialogue at all to blame hydraulic fracturing (which was not being conducted in the area) for an earthquake allegedly linked to a waste water injection well.

  3. Good, if true. Strain relief is good. But what this paper appears to do is to redefine the statistical criteria for “induced quakes” so as to include the 2011 Oklahoma event.

    Here’s the gist of what they’ve done:

    “Pressure data available for the Wilzetta North field are limited to monthly reported wellhead pressure (pressure at the surface while pumping), and no direct measurements of pressure within the reservoir are accessible. We thus follow standard methods and investigate possible temporal correlations between seismicity rate and surface injection parameters (e.g., Healy et al., 1968; Frohlich et al., 2011; Horton, 2012).”

    “Here we present a potential case of fluid injection into isolated pockets resulting in seismicity delayed by nearly 20 yr from the initiation of injection, and by 5 yr following the most substantial increase in wellhead pressure.”

    Why not 100 yr, one might ask?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.