Disposal Wells

StateImpact Oklahoma
7:40 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Town Hall Turns Testy As Oklahomans Seek Action And Answers On Earthquakes

Shaken residents line up inside Edmond's Waterloo Road Baptist Church to voice concerns and ask representatives from the Corporation Commission and the state Geological Survey questions about recent earthquakes.
Joe Wertz StateImpact Oklahoma

Oklahomans rattled by a surge of earthquakes on Thursday packed a contentious town hall meeting in Edmond and demanded answers and action from public officials.

There was booing and shouts for regulators to impose a moratorium on wastewater disposal wells used by the oil and gas industry, which scientists have linked to Oklahoma’s exponential increase in earthquake activity.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
5:43 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

To Get Permit In Earthquake Zone, Disposal Well Operator Agrees To Extra Monitoring

Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

An oil company seeking to build a disposal well in earthquake-prone Logan County has agreed to record additional pressure and volume measurements to get a permit from the state’s oil and gas regulator.

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission on Thursday voted 2-0 to approve the disposal well for Kansas-based Slawson Exploration. Commissioner Dana Murphy abstained from the vote “saying she wanted to wait until more seismic data was available,” The Oklahoman‘s Paul Monies reports:

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StateImpact Oklahoma
8:35 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Red Tape, Not Rules, Used To Manage Disposal Wells In Oklahoma's Earthquake Country

Rig crews in Oklahoma City fracking a well.
Joe Wertz StateImpact Oklahoma

As earthquakes continue to shake the state and researchers study links to drilling, Oklahoma’s oil and gas regulator has changed the way it approves permits for injection wells.

Oil and water have long mixed in Oklahoma and other petroleum states. In the early days of the U.S. oil boom, drillers were focused on finding ways to separate water from the oil they were pumping to the surface.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
3:02 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

Insurance Agents Say More Oklahomans Are Seeking Earthquake Coverage

Credit Great Beyond / Flickr Creative Commons

Very few Oklahomans carry earthquake insurance, less than 1 percent. But that’s beginning to change as the state experiences more and more temblors.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
11:56 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Oklahoma’s Earthquake ‘Swarm’ In One Chart

Magnitude 2.0 and greater Oklahoma earthquakes from 1990-2014.
Credit EQ Charts

EQ Charts has created a really great visual of Oklahoma’s earthquake “swarm.” The chart was built with data from the U.S. Geological Survey, and shows quakes of 2.0-magnitude or greater. Most people can feel earthquakes that are 3.0-magnitude or greater.

Earthquakes have increased exponentially in Oklahoma, a phenomenon federal and university seismologists have linked to disposal wells used by the oil and gas industry.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
6:29 am
Thu January 23, 2014

Earthquakes No Danger To Cushing Oil Hub, Energy Officials Say

A crude oil tank farm in Cushing, Okla.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

The Cushing oil hub is crowded with hulking oil tanks, miles of pipeline and countless pumps, compressors and other equipment used to ferry around the roughly 80 million barrels of crude stored there.

Oklahoma has experienced a swarm of earthquakes, which seismologists say might be triggered by disposal wells used by the oil and gas industry, and it’s not hard to imagine the havoc a little earth-shaking might have on the high-profile oil hub.

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4:18 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

As Quakes Shake Oklahoma, Scientists Eye Oil And Gas Industry

Lead in text: 
Oklahoma has never been known as earthquake country, with a yearly average of about 50 tremors, almost all of them minor. But in the past three years, the state has had thousands of quakes. This year has been the most active, with more than 2,600 so far, including 87 last week.
OKLAHOMA CITY - Mary Catherine Sexton has been rattled enough. This fall her neighborhood in the northeastern part of this city has been shaken by dozens of minor earthquakes. "We would just have little trembles all the time," she said.
StateImpact Oklahoma
2:49 pm
Mon December 2, 2013

Oklahoma No. 2 For Earthquakes In Recent Years, Analysis Shows

A disposal well in Northern Oklahoma.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

Oklahoma is four years into a “swarm” of unusual earthquakes, and is now the second most seismically active state in the continental United States, an EnergyWire analysis shows.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
2:22 pm
Wed November 20, 2013

To Get Data On Disposal Well Earthquakes, State Might Create One

Oklahoma Geological Survey seismologist Austin Holland.
Credit Joe Wertz / StateImpact Oklahoma

While there is a growing amount of scientific research that links central-Oklahoma’s earthquake swarm to wells the oil and gas industry uses for waste-fluid disposal, geophysicists and seismologists don’t fully understand the phenomenon.

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StateImpact Oklahoma
1:38 pm
Mon November 18, 2013

Five Things Oklahomans Need To Know About Earthquake Insurance

Credit viviandnguyen_ / Flickr Creative Commons

Seismologists at the U.S. Geological Survey recently warned that the ongoing earthquake swarm in central-Oklahoma is likely to continue, could get worse, and might be linked to wells oil and gas companies use to store drilling waste-fluid deep underground.

In response, Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner John Doak advised Oklahomans to buy earthquake insurance.

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