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Earth Power

Energy Production Causes Big US Earthquakes 211

Posted by Soulskill
from the please-don't-break-the-planet dept.
ananyo writes "Natural-gas extraction, geothermal-energy production and other activities that inject fluid underground have caused numerous earthquakes in the United States, scientists have reported in a trio of papers in Science (abstracts here, here and here). Most of these quakes have been small, but some have exceeded magnitude 5.0. They include a magnitude-5.6 event that hit Oklahoma on 6 November 2011, damaging 14 homes and injuring two people."
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Energy Production Causes Big US Earthquakes

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 12, 2013 @01:40PM (#44263707)

    Exactly! These guys aren't greedy oil company scavengers, they are tectonic chiropractor simply giving the earth's crust an adjustment. It's called natural gas for christ's sake!

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 12, 2013 @01:55PM (#44263887)
    Agreed. The problem here is Earth itself. The sooner we do away with it, the better! Think of the children and all that.
  • by T.E.D. (34228) on Friday July 12, 2013 @01:59PM (#44263921)

    The University of Oklahoma (home of one of the top Petroleum Engineering departments in the country, and recipient of much oil money), geology department has released statements disagreeing. Why aren't you reporting the "controversy" rather than the science? How incredibly biased!

    In fact, just a few months ago, one their Geological researchers released a peer reviewed study [npr.org] that showed ... let's see here ... uh... that fracking is causing earthquakes.

    Damn. Wait! I know there's a controversy to report here somewhere. Lemme look....ah, here it is:

    Oklahoma’s official seismologist — the Geological Survey’s Austin Holland — is skeptical of the link between injection wells an earthquakes, a view shared by the Corporation Commission and the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association, a trade group that lobbies for the interests of oil and gas producers. More data is needed, Holland says.

    See, this is actually a controversy! You just have to go to sources that aren't as familiar with the actual data, and/or are in the pockets of the folks doing the fracking. Why isn't this controversy being fairly reported?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 12, 2013 @02:17PM (#44264095)

    The Deathstar did not put any extra energy into Alderan. All it did was destabelize the crust, and cause a reaction at the planet's core. So, it's not the empire's fault it exploded.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 12, 2013 @02:19PM (#44264117)

    No no no... you're still missing it. The problem isn't the Earth, that's another proximate cause. The cause is gravity! No... wait... that's just another proximate cause, too. Ah, yes... mass, my old nemesis... we meet again...

  • Re:worth it (Score:4, Funny)

    by AioKits (1235070) on Friday July 12, 2013 @02:46PM (#44264373)

    How much is the economic value of I-35 worth to you?

    It leads to Texas, so none. ;)

  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday July 12, 2013 @02:51PM (#44264411)

    No amount of frakking nor drilling adds any energy to the system. All the energy in the system was put there by geology, and all of that energy will be released via some earthquake. You might change the timing (or location), but you'll have no effect on the total energy released over time.

    Removing random bricks from a building adds no energy to the system either. And after all, the building can't last forever, right? So you might as well remove bricks so the building falls down gradually and save a disaster. Heck, if you plan it just right, you could plan to take just the right bricks out so that the building falls down in a controlled manner.

    People say that removing bricks from buildings make them fall down. But they are fools. It's gravity acting on the potential energy put there by construction that makes the buildings fall down, so clearly there's nothing wrong with removing bricks.

What the world *really* needs is a good Automatic Bicycle Sharpener.

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