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2019-08-16. Sinking Wastewater Triggers Deeper, Stronger Earthquakes.

posted Aug 28, 2019, 4:34 PM by Alan Gould
By Mary Caperton Morton, Eos/AGU. [https://eos.org/articles/sinking-wastewater-triggers-deeper-stronger-earthquakes] For GSS Energy Flow chapter 2 and Energy Use chapter 3. Excerpt: The effects of pumping wastewater from oil and gas extractions may last a decade or more after the injections stop. The oil and gas industry’s practice of pumping wastewater fluids underground for disposal has been implicated in the dramatic uptick in earthquakes in the central United States. Now a new study has found a correlation between the increasing depth of the earthquakes and the rate at which these fluids descend through Earth’s crust, a finding that could have implications for how such fluids are regulated. Over the past decade, earthquakes in the central United States greater than magnitude 3.0 have increased dramatically because of disposal of oil field wastewater into deep geologic formations. Injecting these fluids under pressure can destabilize faults and, in some places, trigger hundreds of induced earthquakes a year over magnitude 3.0, some as large as the magnitude 5.8 quake that struck Pawnee, Okla., in 2016. ...the new study, published in Nature Communications [https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-019-11029-8]....