Debunking the “Fracking Causes Earthquakes” Meme One More Time

Reuters OK Earthquake Lead on DrudgeIf you check out the Drudge Report from time to time (as we do), you would have noticed the big headline yesterday (Sunday) in 100-point type at the top blaring the news RECORD QUAKE ACTIVITY ROCKS OKLAHOMA. “Oh great” (we thought), “Another story about how fracking causes earthquakes.” We didn’t really expect that to be the story line, but lo and behold, when we clicked to read the story, it was a Reuters article that yes–blames fracking for a rash of earthquakes in Oklahoma, just because there’s active oil and gas drilling in the state.

We can almost set our calendars now by the media meme of “fracking causes earthquakes.” It comes around, regular as rain, about every three months. And so we feel it necessary to respond about every three months that no, fracking almost never causes earthquakes–three known times we can point to, out of more than 60,000 shale wells drilled (see Fracking has (so far) Triggered Earthquakes 3x ā€“ Out of 60K Wells). In other words, it’s statistically zero. However, injection wells that dispose of leftover frack wastewater by pumping it deep below the surface, sometimes do trigger earthquakes. It’s rare, but it happens when an injection well is pumping fluid near an underground fault. Is that what is happening in Oklahoma?…

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