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News Link • Geology

Research Shakes Up Earthquake-Energy Connection

 Most notable, perhaps, is a study that focuses on the practice of disposing of wastewater from natural gas development in what are known as deep injection wells.

This activity had previously been associated with causing small earthquakes in the Midwestern U.S., often mere days or weeks after injection, making the link obvious. But in a new paper in the journal Science [PDF], researchers pinpointed locations in Oklahoma, Colorado and Texas in which pumping fluids into deep injection wells appears to have “critically loaded faults” that were then triggered many months later by large, very distant earthquakes.

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