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Drilling and quakes

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Small earth quakes recorded near Timpson Texas a few weeks ago Small earth quakes recorded near Timpson Texas a few weeks ago

Earthquakes produced by faults shifting are quite common world wide and in the US.  California seems to still be the hot bed for tremors.

Over the past few years, small earth quakes have been on the increase in areas not so used to the shakes.  At the same time in these locations, oil and gas drilling has run rampant.

Is there a connection?  Seismologist Dr. Chris Frolich of the University of Texas says yes, but it's more linked to waste injection wells instead of the drilling.  And here, the quakes are tied to the amount and pressure of the fluid injected plus the proximity to dormant or inactive faults.

Again, number of small, man made quakes may be on the rise due to increased oil and gas production.  But, these pale in comparison to the naturally made ones.  The USGS indicates that there were over eleven hundred natural earth quakes in the past month compared to a handful of man made ones.

Find out more in this ArkLaTex In-Depth report.

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