Stanford Researchers Now Able to Detect “Earthquakes” from Fracking

Yes, we must revisit the topic of “fracking causes earthquakes” yet again (sigh). But maybe this time something good will come of our discussion. Researchers at Stanford University (crazy California) have discovered a way to detect thousands of faint, “previously missed earthquakes” triggered by fracking and by injection wells. “The technique can be used to monitor seismic activities at fracking operations to help reduce the likelihood of bigger, potentially damaging earthquakes from occurring,” according to a published research study. By now you know our standard explanation, the facts about fracking and earthquakes: (1) Injection wells can and do cause detectable earthquakes–when they are located over faults. (2) Fracking shale wells rarely causes detectable earthquakes. We know of perhaps a half dozen times when fracking a well, which again happened to be over a fault, caused an earthquake. Out of the millions of fracked wells that have been drilled. Statistically speaking–fracking doesn’t cause earthquakes–detectable earthquakes, that is. You have to understand something about earthquakes and fracking. From the Standord researchers: “Earthquakes generated by fracking are typically no larger than magnitude 0. That’s equivalent to the amount of energy released when a milk carton hits the floor after falling off a counter.” However, every now and again an earthquake will hit a 1 or even 2 magnitude. Above 2 is barely noticeable by humans. What the Stanford researchers have done is to figure out how to monitor seismicity when fracking (or injecting wastewater into wells), and use that information to predict when the activity may lead to triggering a larger quake. Now that is useful information…

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