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Guest Post: U.S. Government Confirms Link Between Earthquakes and Hydraulic Fracturing

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Submitted by John Daly of OilPrice.com

U.S. Government Confirms Link Between Earthquakes and Hydraulic Fracturing

On 5 November an earthquake measuring 5.6 rattled Oklahoma and was felt as far away as Illinois.

Until two years ago Oklahoma typically had about 50 earthquakes a year, but in 2010, 1,047 quakes shook the state.

Why?

In Lincoln County, where most of this past weekend's seismic incidents were centered, there are 181 injection wells, according to Matt Skinner, an official from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission, the agency which oversees oil and gas production in the state.

Cause and effect?

The practice of injecting water into deep rock formations causes earthquakes, both the U.S. Army and the U.S. Geological Survey have concluded.

The U.S. natural gas industry pumps a mixture of water and assorted chemicals deep underground to shatter sediment layers containing natural gas, a process called hydraulic fracturing, known more informally as “fracking.” While environmental groups have primarily focused on fracking’s capacity to pollute underground water, a more ominous byproduct emerges from U.S. government studies – that forcing fluids under high pressure deep underground produces increased regional seismic activity.

As the U.S. natural gas industry mounts an unprecedented and expensive advertising campaign to convince the public that such practices are environmentally benign, U.S. government agencies have determined otherwise.

According to the U.S. Army’s Rocky Mountain Arsenal website, the RMA drilled a deep well for disposing of the site’s liquid waste after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency “concluded that this procedure is effective and protective of the environment.”  According to the RMA, “The Rocky Mountain Arsenal deep injection well was constructed in 1961, and was drilled to a depth of 12,045 feet” and 165 million gallons of Basin F liquid waste, consisting of “very salty water that includes some metals, chlorides, wastewater and toxic organics” was injected into the well during 1962-1966.

Why was the process halted? “The Army discontinued use of the well in February 1966 because of the possibility that the fluid injection was “triggering earthquakes in the area,” according to the RMA. In 1990, the “Earthquake Hazard Associated with Deep Well Injection--A Report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency” study of RMA events by Craig Nicholson, and R.I. Wesson stated simply, “Injection had been discontinued at the site in the previous year once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

Twenty-five years later, “possibility” and ‘established” changed in the Environmental Protection Agency’s July 2001 87 page study, “Technical Program Overview: Underground Injection Control Regulations EPA 816-r-02-025,” which reported, “In 1967, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) determined that a deep, hazardous waste disposal well at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal was causing significant seismic events in the vicinity of Denver, Colorado.”

There is a significant divergence between “possibility,” “established” and “was causing,” and the most recent report was a decade ago. Much hydraulic fracturing to liberate shale oil gas in the Marcellus shale has occurred since.

According to the USGS website, under the undated heading, “Can we cause earthquakes? Is there any way to prevent earthquakes?” the agency notes, “Earthquakes induced by human activity have been documented in a few locations in the United States, Japan, and Canada.

The cause was injection of fluids into deep wells for waste disposal and secondary recovery of oil, and the use of reservoirs for water supplies. Most of these earthquakes were minor. The largest and most widely known resulted from fluid injection at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal near Denver, Colorado. In 1967, an earthquake of magnitude 5.5 followed a series of smaller earthquakes. Injection had been discontinued at the site in the previous year once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

Note the phrase, “Once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established.”

So both the U.S Army and the U.S. Geological Survey over fifty years of research confirm on a federal level that that “fluid injection” introduces subterranean instability and is a contributory factor in inducing increased seismic activity.” How about “causing significant seismic events?”

Fast forward to the present.

Overseas, last month Britain’s Cuadrilla Resources announced that it has discovered huge underground deposits of natural gas in Lancashire, up to 200 trillion cubic feet of gas in all.
 
On 2 November a report commissioned by Cuadrilla Resources acknowledged that hydraulic fracturing was responsible for two tremors which hit Lancashire and possibly as many as fifty separate earth tremors overall. The British Geological Survey also linked smaller quakes in the Blackpool area to fracking. BGS Dr. Brian Baptie said, “It seems quite likely that they are related,” noting, “We had a couple of instruments close to the site and they show that both events occurred near the site and at a shallow depth.”

But, back to Oklahoma. Austin Holland’s August 2011 report, “Examination of Possibly Induced Seismicity from Hydraulic Fracturing in the Eola Field, Garvin County, Oklahoma” Oklahoma Geological Survey OF1-2011, studied 43 earthquakes that occurred on 18 January, ranging in intensity from 1.0 to 2.8 Md (milliDarcies.) While the report’s conclusions are understandably cautious, it does state, “Our analysis showed that shortly after hydraulic fracturing began small earthquakes started occurring, and more than 50 were identified, of which 43 were large enough to be located.”

Sensitized to the issue, the oil and natural gas industry has been quick to dismiss the charges and deluge the public with a plethora of televisions advertisements about how natural gas from shale deposits is not only America’s future, but provides jobs and energy companies are responsible custodians of the environment.

It seems likely that Washington will eventually be forced to address the issue, as the U.S. Army and the USGS have noted a causal link between the forced injection of liquids underground and increased seismic activity. While the Oklahoma quake caused a deal of property damage, had lives been lost, the policy would most certainly have come under increased scrutiny from the legal community.

While polluting a local community’s water supply is a local tragedy barely heard inside the Beltway, an earthquake ranging from Oklahoma to Illinois, Kansas, Arkansas, Tennessee and Texas is an issue that might yet shake voters out of their torpor, and national elections are slightly less than a year away.

 

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Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:14 | 1863568 westboundnup
westboundnup's picture

HAARP

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:15 | 1863569 Hard1
Hard1's picture

Injection time bitchez!!!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:17 | 1863580 Ahmeexnal
Ahmeexnal's picture

BOTOX QUAKES!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:25 | 1863608 trav7777
trav7777's picture

if fracking is causing earthquakes, the gas industry is dead and you can scratch one more solution off the technocornucopia list for peak oil deniers

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:29 | 1863625 blu
blu's picture

r u serious? Next week they'll pass legislation at the Federal level protecting oil and gas companies against any claims that might arise from quake damage.

Nothing will stand in the way of this. No. Thing. Evar.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:53 | 1863705 PAPA ROACH
PAPA ROACH's picture

Kind of like how they shielded companies from any litigation due to MTBE contaminating the water just a few years back...

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:01 | 1863726 knukles
knukles's picture

The sun is the main reason for global warming/climate change.
Come on you fuckers, admit it.
You just want that carbon tax shit to expand your government footprint.

Bastards.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:06 | 1863753 Ahmeexnal
Ahmeexnal's picture

Earthquake in Turkey near iRanian border flattens turkish city.

http://earthquake-report.com/2011/10/23/very-strong-dangerous-earthquake...

Seems like iRan's underground nuclear tests also cause quakers.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:19 | 1863804 Manthong
Manthong's picture

Aw, c'mon...

A little shaking is good for you.. and can be fun.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHcYBve7Jpc&feature=related

 

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 07:33 | 1865131 onthesquare
onthesquare's picture

The great engine at Gisa, interesting book states that the pyrimid was covered with quartz and that sizemic activity would turn it into a great peizo electic generator.  It would also calm the earth of big earthquakes.

Watch for the oil companys to run with this.  That their fracking is making more little earthquakes and reducing the possibility of big ones.  3 cheers.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:56 | 1863939 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

Wait - Quakers are Muslim?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:26 | 1864048 knukles
knukles's picture

Praise Allah

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:59 | 1864173 nmewn
nmewn's picture

the great and most merciful.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 23:27 | 1864457 JW n FL
JW n FL's picture

 

 

Uncle Remus

Wait - Quakers are Muslim?

Quakers are Crackers!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:13 | 1863776 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

You mean that big super nuclear thing that heats the earth from many many miles away?  No...........

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:21 | 1863813 gangland
gangland's picture

duh...next the gubermint confirms the link between printing money and inflation....after the half life of depleted uranium.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:42 | 1863894 rosex229
rosex229's picture

the sun is the source for 99.9999999% of the thermal energy contained in the biosphere ( no one would doubt that). climate change relates to the amount of the suns solar radiation that is captured by our atmosphere relative to historic levels.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:17 | 1864024 Vagabond
Vagabond's picture

You miss the point Carlton, he's talking about solar actiivity such as solar flares.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 08:47 | 1865285 Bendromeda Strain
Bendromeda Strain's picture

Huh - I thought he was talking about the fact that the Little Ice Age ended without a single internal combustion engine being turned over.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:45 | 1864287 Buck Johnson
Buck Johnson's picture

No kidding, our country and our leaders are made men and women. 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:35 | 1864092 prains
prains's picture

Fracking is about to go Off Balance Sheet

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:33 | 1863644 ihedgemyhedges
ihedgemyhedges's picture

I can assure you of one thing Trav, I've been married nearly 18 years and there ain't much fracking going on at my house so you can't blame me if the industry dies.......................although early on in our dating life, we may have made the earth tremble once or twice........but of course, that was during the dating years........................

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:48 | 1863690 SoCalBusted
SoCalBusted's picture

Maybe you can get in through some sort of back door deal

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:31 | 1864074 Banksters
Banksters's picture

Clean yur snatch.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 19:09 | 1868122 mkkby
mkkby's picture

Sounds like you need some off balance sheet fracking.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:01 | 1863728 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

if fracking is causing earthquakes, the gas industry is dead and you can scratch one more solution off the technocornucopia list for peak oil deniers

+1

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:01 | 1863729 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

if fracking is causing earthquakes, the gas industry is dead and you can scratch one more solution off the technocornucopia list for peak oil deniers

+1

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:29 | 1863843 rosex229
rosex229's picture

I've been aware of peak oil and perhaps more importantly it's imminent and a rather severe consequences for industrial civilization since 2007. what made me more pessimistic than anything off late ( and there's plenty to be pessimistic about) was the strong opinion that formed against nuclear after fukushima this spring.

the nails were already solidly in the coffin for industrial civilization, but that event poured 6 feet of dirt over the coffin.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:06 | 1864797 Freddie
Freddie's picture

-2

There are tons of things that can be done including geothermal and safer nuke plants.  If they would stop pushing that old steam shit from GE and Westinghouse crap then you would have safe reactors. Pebble bed, thorium or the Argonne design are just a few options.

http://www.anl.gov/Media_Center/logos20-1/passive01.htm

Offshore drilling, oil shale, coal diesel, nat gas that is plentiful around the world.  What will kill the world is morons with their hand out and policticians.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:56 | 1864908 Seer
Seer's picture

"There are tons of things that can be done"

And just because something CAN be done that does not mean that it SHOULD be done.

But, as is typical of the cornucopian mindset, the glaring error is that they fail to consider- growth.  That is, scalability is always  ignored.  Same technique is used by drug-pushers to lock an addict in; once they're hooked then the stupid-flag flies and the totally unsustainable becomes the sought after.  It's great for the drug-pushers (who have the money to promote the "wonders" of their stuff).

What will "kill the world" (as though the world could be "killed") is two-dimensional thinking.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:35 | 1864788 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Obama is a muslim stooge for the Saudis. No was breaking sand rock formations using high powered hoses shooting out fluid or nitrogen is going to cause earthquakes.   More Hussein Admin BS.  Anything to help the islamic oil countries.

One of the Canadian fracking companies has a video where they used nitrogen for injection.  Pretty amazing technology. Very cool when it comes back out of the ground.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:59 | 1864911 Seer
Seer's picture

"Obama is a muslim stooge for the Saudis. No was breaking sand rock formations using high powered hoses shooting out fluid or nitrogen is going to cause earthquakes. "

OK, your OPINION is duly noted (as having no measurable value).  Now go pound for the GOP (corporations, or whatever party that you pledge your soul to).

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 13:01 | 1866459 Gold Man-Sacks
Gold Man-Sacks's picture

Jesus, this moron has a one-tract mind.  I can't believe that many ZH readers, who I presume to to be intelligent, actually agree with this tard.  Yeah, the nat gas industry is dead.  Serioulsy?  Tell that to Boone Pickens.  Moron.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:28 | 1863622 sqz
sqz's picture

I have to admit I'm a bit puzzled.

Can I ask Americans why it takes your Army and national Geological Survey to do the job of your Environmental Protection Agency?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:33 | 1863645 blu
blu's picture

EPA has no jurisdiction in the matter. It is strictly an engineering question, perhaps a safety issue.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:02 | 1863732 surf0766
surf0766's picture

They are too busy closing businesses?

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 00:08 | 1864570 donsluck
donsluck's picture

Only the ones who poison, POISON, your air, water or food.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 08:51 | 1865301 Bendromeda Strain
Bendromeda Strain's picture

They seem to have an erection for carbon dioxide these days. Stop breathing fool. Oh wait, that's not fair. You may breathe - in.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 01:55 | 1864780 Lord Koos
Lord Koos's picture

No, they're too busy doing business.

 

 

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:07 | 1864800 Freddie
Freddie's picture

The EPA? Like most govt agencies - too busy surfing the web for porn.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:57 | 1863945 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

Does this prove we don' need no steenkin' EPA?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:41 | 1864120 fnordfnordfnord
fnordfnordfnord's picture

Look everyone! A socio-commu-terrororist! You just hate our freedom because you're jealous.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:02 | 1864180 CH1
CH1's picture

This is bullshit. Tiny gaps collapsing don't shake the earth - large plate movements do.

This is being financed by the big oil players. Fracking is their doom and must be stopped at all costs. They OWN the US Geological Survey.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 01:59 | 1864787 Lord Koos
Lord Koos's picture

Spoken with the confidence of someone who has a degree in geology, or some other relevant scienific experience. Too bad that it's obvious that you do not.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:33 | 1864840 geekgrrl
geekgrrl's picture

Ditto that. Massive hydraulic pressure pulverizes the rock, and yet subsequent earthquakes are somehow unexpected? Please.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:55 | 1864864 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

Cause and effect are very difficult for some to conceive when it is out of sight. "We pumped water in the ground and the grounds already full of water how could that affect anything?"

In the Barnett Shale, estimated frack water usage ranges between 2.5 to 9 million gallons per frack. The Eagle Ford Shale average, according to the Texas Water Development Board, is 7.5 million gallons per frack. We don’t know exactly how much water they use because most of the estimates come from industry. We do have the little dab of information from the Upper Trinity Groundwater Conservation District that revealed industry used 1,146,598,272.73 gallons of groundwater in 2009. But that only considers the metered sources. There were many cases where industry took water from unmetered sources with no enforcement action or fines.

Another estimate on frack water usage comes from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Mywesttexas.com recently reported in their article, Gas fracturing trades one scarce resource for another, that EPA “estimates water use for fracking nationwide was 70 billion to 140 billion gallons in 2010.”


Fracking could suck Texas dry. Photo: Memphis Commercial Appeal

What if I told you that these estimates are only a drop in the bucket when you consider the associated water usage required to fracture a well?

I don’t know how much sand they use to frack a Barnett Shale gas well but I did find a frack sand provider that claims it takes 5 millions pounds of sand to frack a Marcellus gas well. So, let’s just use that for a ballpark number. According to my favorite iPhone App, Convert, that’s 2,500 tons of frack sand for one frack job. 

You might remember from my blog post, Frack sand mining doesn’t just suck, it blows, that Enron Oil and Gas (EOG) will use 3700 gallons of water per minute to process frack sand at their proposed mine in North Texas.  According to the permit, the EOG frack sand mine can produce up to a maximum of 150 tons of finished frack sand per hour.

Fun with fracking social math:

  • 2500 tons is approximately 303 African elephants.
  • At 150 tons per hour, it will take 17 hours and 3,774,000 million gallons of water to process 2500 tons of frack sand.  (Now you have enough sand to frack one well.)
  • A Barnett Shale gas well takes from 2.5 to 9 million gallons of water to frack.
  • There are approximately 15,000 wells in the Barnett Shale.
  • If each well used only the minimum amount of water, 2.5 million gallons, and only 2500 tons of frack sand, the associated water cost for fracking one well would be 6,274,000 million gallons.
  • That’s a minimum of 94,110,000,000 gallons of water and 3,750,000 tons of sand (454,545 African elephants) used to frack the approximately 15000 Barnett Shale gas wells.
  • According to the US Geological Survey, a person uses 80 to 100 gallons of water a day.  
  • Using the higher number of 100 gallons of water a day, that is enough water for 941,100,000 people for one day.
  • That’s enough water for 31,370,000 people for one month.
  • That’s enough water for 2,578,368 people for one year.
  • That’s enough water for 36,834 people for an entire generation (70 years).
  • That’s almost enough water for all of Cooke County for 70 years.
  • That’s enough water for the entire 6,500,000 population of Dallas for 145 days.

That’s a whole lot of fracking water!

The EOG frack sand mine is in an area designated by TCEQ as a priority groundwater management area (PGMA). According to TCEQ, a PGMA is "an area designated and delinated by TCEQ that is experiencing, or is expected to experience, within 25 years, critical groundwater problems including shortages of surface water or groundwater, land subsidence resulting from groundwater withdrawal, and contamination of groundwater supplies."

 

http://earthblog.org/content/water-fracking-sucks-more-you-think

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 19:55 | 1868258 Augustus
Augustus's picture

Quit posting the Pranking nonsense.

The El Paso Water Utility serves roughly 750,000 people using 133 g/da.  That is then about 100,000,000 gallons / day for ONE utility.  Who is sucking Texas dry?

http://epwu.org/water/water_resources.html

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 23:17 | 1864427 soitis
soitis's picture

If you have everyone else doing somebody's job, nobody gets blamed. It's called good government practice, sheesh. What? Your government makes more sense?

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 00:04 | 1864564 Willzyx
Willzyx's picture

The army is better funded

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:03 | 1864917 Seer
Seer's picture

The Army existed BEFORE the EPA.  Lots of data predated the EPA.  And in modern times the corporate funders of the govt (energy, banking and insurance) manipulate nearly all activities (though not all can be monitored).

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:26 | 1863612 smlbizman
smlbizman's picture

rubber dishes bitchezz.....

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:41 | 1863668 Freewheelin Franklin
Freewheelin Franklin's picture

...and plastic cups?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:54 | 1863710 Jumbotron
Jumbotron's picture

"rubber dishes bitchezz....."

Put some Rubber Buscuits on those rubber dishes....SOONER BOOMER BITCHEZZZZZ !!!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jYyBZE0kBtE

 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:38 | 1864103 fnordfnordfnord
fnordfnordfnord's picture

Best investment advice of the day. Long Acme Rubber Dish Co.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:42 | 1864124 fnordfnordfnord
fnordfnordfnord's picture

Best investment advice of the day. Long Acme Rubber Dish Co.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:25 | 1863605 rosex229
rosex229's picture

even though I am a harsh critic of hydraulic fracturing I have to object to the idea that hydraulic fracturing was the sole cause of a 5.6 magnitude earthquake.

there is no doubt that hydraulic fracturing does cause earthquakes, but the richter scale is logarithmic. a 5.0 magnitude earthquake is 10 times more powerful than a 4.0 earthquake, but contains and releases 31.6 times more energy.

the earthquakes associated with fracking are on a scale far smaller. my bet is that fracking creates thousands of weak earthquakes, and increases the probability of much larger earthquakes. however other factors must be present to create high magnitude earthquakes.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:31 | 1863636 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Fracking occurs mostly in shale, an extemely soft rock that can easily be broken apart with your bare hands.  We had tons of it on Mule Creek, and it's often associated with oil deposits.  This is worth some study, but it requires a serious look at the depths and geology involved.  The sky is not falling.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:09 | 1863768 Dapper Dan
Dapper Dan's picture

no , it's not falling , it is just irrational exuberance.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:15 | 1864814 Freddie
Freddie's picture

It is like running a big hose with water or really a slipper mixture that is not toxic. They also can use nitrogen to crack this soft sandy rock.  How this would be able to get tectonic plates to move is nonsense.   The Saudis are concerned and they paid part o fthe $700 million to get their muslim in the white hut.

We are going to sit by and watch the Chinese take about 5 billion barrels of oil from Floirda very soon.  Obama and the Dems will do anything to keep us dependent.  Domestic energy exploration and production is the only thing they can probably keep the US from going totally bankrupt.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:10 | 1864874 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

You are assuming all earthquakes are caused by tectonic plate movement. Subsidence can cause large earthquakes as well. The pressue of ice from the last glacial ice age, pushing down on the earth from its sheer weight caused compression of the land masses where it overburdened the land.

Earthquakes occuring inOhio and other midwestern states are thought to be the results of the ground decompressing now that the glaciers are gone. They are occuring in contemporary time though the glaciers melted 12,000 years ago (more or less)

We can't predict earthquakes because we don't understand the precise mechanism involved, nor do we know the location of all faults. New fault lines are found every year.

My dad had one rule, if you don't understand something, don't fuck with it. Every system has a tipping point. How many billions of gallons of water can we inject into a site before the pressure must be accomadated by the surrounding land mass? We are learning as we go.

Shall we destroy all the clean water so that we might prolong our natural gas supplies? We can live without natural gas, we can't live without clean water. If we fuck this up, we kill ourselves.

Proceed with caution, this cake can't be unbaked.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:23 | 1864935 Seer
Seer's picture

"We are going to sit by and watch the Chinese take about 5 billion barrels of oil from Floirda [sic] very soon."

Is this a recoverable amount?

Is it IN Florida, or is it off the coast in International waters? (like BP in the Gulf)

"Obama and the Dems will do anything to keep us dependent.  Domestic energy exploration and production is the only thing they can probably keep the US from going totally bankrupt."

The planet is finite.  Oil resources ARE finite (unless you're one of those non-conservatives who believe that everything is in abundance and we should just party on and not CONSERVE).

Forbes (one of the clan members) said back in the 70s that the US should look to use everyone else's oil first.  Are you disagreeing with this big-name capitalist conservative, that the US should instead use up all of its oil first?

And, what's your strategy when oil extraction does peak?  How are you proposing that we meet whatever growth rates you think that we should be achieving? (what growth rates DO you propose?)

As far as bankruptcy goes, clearly you're not grasping how debts are paid- they're NOT paid off by consuming your own resources.  Yeah, it would make manufacturing a bit cheaper, but I highly doubt that exported goods could be ramped up enough (as a result of lower energy costs) such that the US (are we referring it to as a "collective?" tsk, tsk!) to pay off past debts while still promoting growth: and this assumes that the rest of the world has wealth to part with to buy US goods.

Thanks for playing!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:37 | 1863655 InconvenientCou...
InconvenientCounterParty's picture

There is no doubt, atomic decay is a source of radiation. There is no direct evidence that a limited number of stray ions from a limited number of atomic decay events can cause a large scale explosion. Other factors must be involved.

-Mohammad Ahmadinejad

 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:53 | 1863707 rosex229
rosex229's picture

I should have elaborated and stated that the earthquakes that fracking is responsible for can be detected by seismic equipment ( like oklahoma going from a historic average of 50 earthquakes per year too well over 1000 per year coincidentally when fracking came around), but these earthquakes on the scale of 2.0 are not detectable too human beings even if the epicenter is directly below them.

in other words, fracking causes earthquakes, but these earthquakes are so minor that they are essentially harmless.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:24 | 1863823 Cthonic
Cthonic's picture

I don't think hydraulic fracturing could supply the energy for a large quake, instead it possibly triggers one if there is pre-existing geological stress.  Basically brings the event forward in time.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:36 | 1863879 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

As a former Combat Engineer, I remember such a thing called "Sympathetic Detonation."  If your explosives are placed too close together, one explosion can cause the others to go off.

I file this under the same effect.  Sure, hydraulic injection may not itself cause a 5+ earthquake, but as Cthonic said above, pre-existing stress could be like a 1000 lb bunker-buster laying 10 yards beneath the surface, and the 50 lb charge you detonate on the surface sets it off.

 

If this is true, and in my view it does, I hope they aren't doing any fracking anywhere in between Memphis and St. Louis.

Anybody know if it's being done around Beebe Arkansas?

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:18 | 1864820 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Memphis and St. Louis?  Two dumps.  You should worry more about rampant crime in those shitholes then some fracking earthquake fantasy advanced by the Hussein/Al Waleed Administration.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:25 | 1864880 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

Read up on the New Madrid fault. Every significant oil and gas pipeline goes through that area, Several nuclear plants are located in the quake area and many.many electrical transmission lines. A large quake in the area will cause a large loss of life and infrastructure.

Perhaps you should put your politics in your pocket and think about the very real possibility of human tragedy that an earthquake in the area of those "two dumps" could cause. Those "two dumps" are peoples homes and livlihoods.

The zone had four of the largest North American earthquakes in recorded history, with moment magnitudes estimated to be as large as 8.0, all occurring within a three-month period between December 1811 and February 1812. Many of the published accounts describe the cumulative effects of all the earthquakes (known as the New Madrid Sequence); thus finding the individual effects of each quake can be difficult. Magnitude estimates and epicenters are based on interpretations of historical accounts and may vary.

The 150-mile (240 km) long fault system, which extends into five states, stretches southward from Cairo, Illinois; through Hayti, Caruthersville and New Madrid in Missouri; through Blytheville into Marked Tree in Arkansas. It also covers a part of West Tennessee, near Reelfoot Lake, extending southeast into Dyersburg.

Most of the seismicity is located between 3 and 15 miles (4.8 and 24 km) beneath the Earth's surface.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:27 | 1864941 Seer
Seer's picture

Spoken like a true elitist!  Don't give a shit about others.

You suck.  PERIOD.  And, you're a dumb-ass.  But other than these clear flaws I'm sure that you're a "fine" person.

Go away troll!

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 12:35 | 1866304 Auric Goldfinger
Auric Goldfinger's picture

Junked you because...hell, it's obvious. 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:26 | 1863831 Reformed Sheep
Reformed Sheep's picture

Well a small crack in your windshield can creep along with barely noticable increases as you hit minor bumps, but at some point it will break catastrophically. I don't think anybody is claiming that a fracking event (or series of them) is a direct cause of a noticable seismic event, but if it paves the way for one by systematically weaking the geology in an area, then it's still the root cause, no?

 

 

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:13 | 1864812 Xavier Doe
Xavier Doe's picture

Not necessarily - I'd say the root cause is still plate tectonics.  It's just that by reducing the # of friction points in the crust (by breaking it up), you may be converting a smaller # of devastating / catastrophic earthquakes into a much larger # of earthquakes with less energy per quake -- essentially leveling out the peaks.  (Not a geologist, but I did stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night...)

 

As all pop science continues to trend towards advocacy anyhow, maybe the gas companies will try to sell this pitch based on the conjecture that - by leveling out the peaks - they're actually lowering the chance of The Big One, and thus doing us a favor ... ("Bust that rock up!  If for no other reason, let's do it to save the cities, man!")

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:33 | 1864952 Seer
Seer's picture

Excellent example of clear thinking!

Now then, maybe we can tap earthquakes for energy? :-)

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:28 | 1863841 Apeman
Apeman's picture

Mahmoud

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:06 | 1863751 Tao 4 the Show
Tao 4 the Show's picture

Generally, earthquakes follow a power law distribution w.r.t. magnitude. I can imagine the fracking case being somewhat different, but wouldn't exclude generation of some larger earthquakes with lower probability.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:54 | 1863931 Nom de Guerre
Nom de Guerre's picture

Xylophone, bitchez

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 12:48 | 1866371 Auspecieous
Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:16 | 1863575 Rainman
Rainman's picture

Get used to it. The politicians here in Cali have been fracking us for decades.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:13 | 1864216 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

Still won't keep california, silicon valley and italy from having a really fucking bad day at the makeover shop. Should be any day now.

Gonna suck being a ptb without a functioning propaganda and computer fraud machine.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:18 | 1863584 writingsonthewall
writingsonthewall's picture

fracking is fine (just not near my house)

 

go back to your homes

 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:19 | 1863586 homersimpson
homersimpson's picture

I've confirmed a link between uber-hot women and old rich guys.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:00 | 1863956 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

Sooo, it's not about the fracking...

Tue, 11/22/2011 - 01:35 | 1901559 geekgrrl
geekgrrl's picture

Money?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:19 | 1863588 Racer
Racer's picture

As in previous dominating civilisations the US is about to fail and bring the rest down with it thanks to the ChairSATAN's idiotic mad theories of how to fix it

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:37 | 1864961 Seer
Seer's picture

Well, it was pre-destined for failure given that it's all predicated on perpetual growth on a finite planet.  There's nothing new here that hasn't already happened in the past: well, there is in that the world is pretty much populated and resource plundering has peaked globally (no new lands and people to exploit [no new media for growth]).

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:20 | 1863593 Payne
Payne's picture

Then this would be good thing to relieve stress on fault lines and hopefully prevent a major event or maybe cause a major event, gee no one really knows.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:40 | 1864964 Seer
Seer's picture

Fuck it, if we're going to go out* then why not do some experimenting?  Seeing as this is unpredictable maybe we get lucky and it results in lots of the aristocracy being wiped out?

* Next glacial period (cycle) is lurking.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:20 | 1863594 bigbucksr
bigbucksr's picture

This is complete crap....there is no way that hydraulic fracting causes earthquakes...everyone knows that the increased earthquake activity is due to HAARP...with stories like this going mainstream, it is obvious that the the globalists's plan for a massive earthquake on the San Madrid fault will be happening soon....get your bottled water now..Are you ready?

http://www.ready.gov/are-you-ready-guide

Why on earth would are government create web sites like this?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:25 | 1863597 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

Hydraulic fracking causes earthquakes? 

No studies ever like this for the period encompassing the underground testing of nuclear weapons. 

Another "global warming" type of sham to make sure prices get jacked up

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:36 | 1863606 ??
??'s picture

here's the study by Austin Holland that is the basis for the article in context that that the author from Oil Price seemed to have missed

Conclusion

The number of historical earthquakes in the area and uncertainties in hypocenter locations make it impossible to determine with a high degree of certainty whether or not hydraulic-­?fracturing induced these earthquakes. Whether or not the earthquakes in the Eola Field were triggered by hydraulic-­? fracturing these were small earthquakes with only one local resident having reported feeling them.

 

http://www.eenews.net/assets/2011/11/02/document_pm_01.pdf#page=28

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:45 | 1863907 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

Don't forget Trinidad, CO:

http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2002/ofr-02-0073/ofr-02-0073.html

B.    A question of induced seismicity:

In recent years, the area west of Trinidad has become the focus of extensive drilling for the production of coal-bed methane.  Water from the coal-bed methane production is returned to the subsurface in disposal wells, and local citizens and officials in the Trinidad area expressed concern that the earthquakes might be somehow related to this fluid disposal.  Previous cases of subsurface fluid disposal causing earthquakes have been reported elsewhere in Colorado.  Earthquakes were induced by fluid injection at Rangely oil field (1960-1973), at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal (1962-1972 , Healy and others, 1966, 1968, and Herrmann and others, 1981), and at Paradox Valley (1991-present ).

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:32 | 1864837 Freddie
Freddie's picture

The locals should call that ambulence chaser Erin Brockovich.  She won't do anything because it is total BS but they might like looking at her fake silicon rack.  She has pretty big hoots.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:28 | 1864885 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

Do you do all your thinking with your dick?

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:45 | 1864977 Seer
Seer's picture

Of course it does; it is, after all, A DICK!

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:44 | 1864974 Seer
Seer's picture

Corporate shill.

Go away troll!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:17 | 1864228 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

Bitch. I got shook out of bed on the 5.3. I felt the 4ish and even felt the 3.8 aftershock yesterday.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:43 | 1864971 Seer
Seer's picture

"with a high degree of certainty"

Well, there you go!  All the metrics that anyone could ever want!  "Not high" means "not happening"...

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:28 | 1863623 rosex229
rosex229's picture

the industry itself ( the 1 that would benefit from jacked up prices) firmly denies any correlation between earthquakes and their hydraulic fracturing.

No conspiracies here just geophysics.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:34 | 1863649 bob_dabolina
bob_dabolina's picture

NatGas is the #1 contender to replace nuclear power plants, as well as a viable alternative to gasoline for internal combustion engines. 

There are a few industries that could feel threatened...ie solar, oil, etc. A great way to help grow your industry is by eliminating the competition.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:46 | 1863681 rosex229
rosex229's picture

that's a very valid and prescient point, and certainly merits research.

from my understanding ( and this is completely anecdotal) many natural gas companies are subsidiaries of big oil and certainly rely on the same equipment and finance companies as big oil. also I'm not sure that solar companies have the wallet nor the levels of collusion necessary to influence a USGS report... from the 1960's

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:19 | 1863805 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Nat gas is for suckers.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:56 | 1863937 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Bob, you can be such a misguided optimist...

I hereby dub thee, Bob the Cornucopian Knob....

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:04 | 1863976 Uncle Remus
Uncle Remus's picture

chortle

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:59 | 1864995 Seer
Seer's picture

"A great way to help grow your industry is by eliminating the competition."

Yes, these forces are ALWAYS at work.  However, that shouldn't mean that any facts that one side or the other should present should be ignored.

The subprime mortgage fiasco clearly shows us that those betting against banks (and the real estate sector) had plenty to gain.

The "industry," however, is also in competition with GROWTH, with the ability of the finite planet to absorb growth.  The industry will one day achieve the same fate as the financial sector (expansion ultimately stopped).

I liked T. Boone Pickens' "plan."  Well, as far as any notion of trying to perpetuate the impossible (perpetual growth on a finite planet), I thought his plan had the highest degree of probability of extending the paradigm the longest: oh, and Pickens' had/has plenty to gain by promoting this plan.  NG as a transportation fuel, however, has serious drawbacks, most notably the storage issue.  Sigh, cornucopians just don't appreciate how impressive oil is: I'm in awe of the energy density of oil; whenever I put my tractor to work I understand how precious this energy source is.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:43 | 1863673 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Have you ever been to Nevada?  Ever wonder why they were nuking salt?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:30 | 1864067 knukles
knukles's picture

Pray tell, why?
(I mean, I'll bite.  It's certainly not something that I'd thought much about and actively pursued answers to, so I'm all ears.  Seriously.)
P.S. Yes, I've been to Nevada, too.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:20 | 1864826 Xavier Doe
Xavier Doe's picture

'Cuz salt rock's purdy when it glows in the dark?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:22 | 1863599 silverserfer
silverserfer's picture

sheeple are expendable. corporate profits must be protected at any cost! listen to the gas industry they're good guys!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:31 | 1863857 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Are the people going to be "expended" by a bunch of earthquakes that hardly even register, and one "big" one that does a little bit of damage to one town every 25 years it is used?

Anyone consider the likelihood that these types of operations release pent up stress, preventing larger earthquakes, or reducing their magnitude when they do happen?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:17 | 1864227 karzai_luver
karzai_luver's picture

thank you Mr. Bove!

 

 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 22:35 | 1864257 Hephasteus
Hephasteus's picture

Crust damage is crust damage. So I guess instead of a large earthquake you get a volcano forming or something much better and more benign. Which of course acts like skin. You know when you cut a guy up some. The skin overbuilds where you cut him. Then you get the big earthquake anyway.

Mount saint helen says you are right. Let's fuck up the earths skin. It'll work out fine.

There's always stress on the crust. It doesn't get pent up. It's freaking magma. It doesn't go to anger management or thermal management classes. Thats like saying sawing half the a-arm on your car just relieves pent up not sliding on the concrete stress.

The crust usually has an aquafer layer. This layer moves quite a bit of heat or actually cold from the rock above to the rock below and helps keep the layer below the aquafer layer cool and rigid. Fracking usually goes right down to below the aquafer layer.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:46 | 1864856 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Yeah well the tectonic plates or lithosphere is about 63 miles thick and is very very hard.  Breaking up sandstone at the most 1 to 3 miles underground using high pressure hoses pushing out liquid or notrogen is not going to shift tectonic plates.   Fracking hose break up sandstone and while the force is great - the force of tectonic plates has a force beyond comprehension.  You can put nukes underground and it will not be enough force to effect the plates.

Mankind has this fantasy that we have enough power to affect incredibly powerful forces like the weather, climate, sun, earth's core.  We don't.   These fantasies are effective in fleecing taxpayers for more BS studies conducted by grant chasing corrupt American universities.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 03:56 | 1864909 TheMerryPrankster
TheMerryPrankster's picture

You know the important point is that we live on top of the lithosphere. So localised problems in the upper 3 miles would tend to affect us much more than, smaller deeper movements at the bottom.

The problem is we don't know how much deep water injection can be done in a single area before it results in stress in the surrounding rock formations. moreover there are 2 different problems at work

1. the fracturing of the shale by fracking fluid injection, which leads to the removal of the natural gas associated gas liquids, thereby creating a void in the weakened fractured rock.

2. the disposal of millions of gallons of waste water from this process by high pressure injection into deep disposal wells.

so we are creating voids in one area and then creating pressure points in another and yet no one thinks there won't be an attempt by these forces to reach equilibrium?  and we are expecting to drill hundreds of thousands of these wells with no effect on the lands around them. I'm in awe of the magic - I'll bet you'd have wagered that you couldn't possibly have a big oil leak on a deep sea drilling rig, if anyone had asked you 2 years ago.

We are not gods, we are men, we constantly fuck up, the Titanic, the Challenger, Chernobyl, Fukushima. Don't assume we know we what are doing, because a lot of time we don't.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:07 | 1865000 Seer
Seer's picture

Jack Kemp school of thinking...  Humans have no affect on the planet!

Hubris would be the notion that we don't have any impact.

I love how you apply "corrupt American universities" to the entire world.  But... hm, major funders of research are corporations, so, perhaps, you've got a point here.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:48 | 1864860 Freddie
Freddie's picture

Mount St. Helens was a semi dormant volcano that erupted.  How did mankind cause this? 

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 02:51 | 1864863 Xavier Doe
Xavier Doe's picture

TTBOMK multiple popular media sources have been telling the public for years that lateral stresses on the crust do tend to cause energy buildup, and subsequent release as a much more powerful earthquake, than would have occurred had the tectonic plates involved been free(r) to glide past one another over time.  Though when two plates are headed toward each other (subductiion / uplift) rather than past one another, this behavior may not be relevant - don't know.

 

Also not sure if the midwest earthquakes fall into this category.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:23 | 1863600 ??
??'s picture

U.S. Government Confirms Link Between Washington and Wall Street

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:23 | 1863601 oogs66
oogs66's picture

C'mon cheap gas and some jobs versus some earthquakes? What's the big deal. Besides some deaths would help the unemployment rate and think of the stimulus to rebuild after a big one :)

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:38 | 1863660 nmewn
nmewn's picture

That fracking Krugman should be all over it...he seems long on window pane ;-)

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:24 | 1863603 X Yooper
X Yooper's picture

As a geologist, I can't see the connection. If it was done in an already active zone, yes, it could be a possibility. But in a stable environment, I would need to see more evidence.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:30 | 1863628 AUD
AUD's picture

Forced injection liquifying the target rocks, allowing movement?

I'd have thought the pressures required to inject water deep underground would be extreme but maybe that's what the chemicals are for, to 'catalyse' the pressures?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:34 | 1863648 rosex229
rosex229's picture

you can't see why a process thats by definition fractures rock layers deep underground, and then pumps the millions upon millions of gallons of effluent back into the newly fractured rock under high pressure for disposal could lead to small magnitude earthquakes?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:57 | 1863715 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Hydraulics isn't geology, so maybe it's an alien concept?

Personally, I wouldn't think it would take a geologist to understand that breaking the ground apart under your feet (at whatever depth) could be considered a good thing, as all things are connected, and ALL ACTIONS have consequences.

Even something as simple as pumping water out of aquifers can alter things in such a way that you'll eventually be screwed (Florida's salt-water infiltration, for instance). Some places are even sinking due to it.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:21 | 1864038 UP Forester
UP Forester's picture

You must have gone to Tech.  Shoulda studied Forestry, you'd have figured out that book-learning is bullshit, you actually learn everything "in the field."

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 07:04 | 1865105 X Yooper
X Yooper's picture

Nope. Not a MTU graduate (but close). But I do agree with you, book learning can’t compare with 30 years of experience.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:29 | 1864060 fnordfnordfnord
fnordfnordfnord's picture

Politely ask your alma mater for the money back.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:11 | 1865005 Seer
Seer's picture

"But in a stable environment"

Does such a thing really exist?  I mean, nothing is static...

We were once told that radiation is good for us.  Oh, smoking was also promoted by "doctors" (and future presidents).

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 06:47 | 1865090 X Yooper
X Yooper's picture

My first post was written on the run, so it appears I didn’t express myself clear enough. Earthquakes are the result of movement, either sideways or up and down. In an area of a known fault, it is probable that removing/adding pressure on the surrounding rock would cause sideways movement and hence an earthquake. I cannot see how fracking could cause a sideways movement where no previous activity has been experienced or expected to be experienced (i.e. no fault present, hence “stable”).

It is also possible to have a failure of lower formations and thus have a collapse of upper formations. But would this movement be enough to cause a measurable seismic event? That is where I am skeptical without more data.

 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:26 | 1863611 blu
blu's picture

Next week: State governments will rush to pass laws (retroactive) exempting oil and gas companies from any and all liability or claims that might stem from earthquakes.

Your tax dollars at work.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:15 | 1865010 Seer
Seer's picture

Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if it's already covered by NAFTA.  Pretty sick shit, which allows corporations (even foreign ones from Canada and Mexico) to claim damages if their ability to extract profits is hindered by anyone adversely affected by their operations.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:27 | 1863615 Paladin en passant
Paladin en passant's picture

This must have been posted by the crackpot Tyler.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:31 | 1863638 blu
blu's picture

Um ... it's a story about a government study. Seems legit to me.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:00 | 1863727 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Well, except for the part about the Army stopping due to the damage. In my six years in the USMC, I never saw anything like that, but instead, one environmental disaster after another.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:05 | 1863743 blu
blu's picture

See my post further down; I wonder if the whole thing is a rich setup to get the frackers to open their wallets.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:34 | 1864086 knukles
knukles's picture

Oh, you mean like investigations, hearings, depositions and associated shit that Just So Fucking Happen to Accompany Related, Increased Campaign Contribution Activity?

Nah.  No Way.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 00:11 | 1864580 Paladin en passant
Paladin en passant's picture

Perhaps a little intellectual consistency is called for.  This is the site, after all, that spends half its day deriding goverment statistics and reports.  Only a fool would put any stock in a government statistic or report.  You might want to look in the mirror and see if that applies to you, fool.  It certainly applies to the crackpot person who has the privilege of posting this sort of crap under the "Tyler" nom de bourse

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:20 | 1865017 Seer
Seer's picture

Anyone painting with a broad brush is sure to paint that which shouldn't be painted.

Smoking is GOOD for you.

Radiation is SAFE.

Given that these two things were promoted by CORPORATIONS I should assume that ALL things said by corporations are non-factual?

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:27 | 1863616 fiatbubble
fiatbubble's picture

SHORT NICARAGUA!

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:29 | 1863626 Timmay
Timmay's picture

Get jiggy wit it.....

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:33 | 1863646 Mr. Lucky
Mr. Lucky's picture

Your all wrong!!  Its all Comet Elenin.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:22 | 1863816 Mr Lennon Hendrix
Mr Lennon Hendrix's picture

Or the asteroid that just flew by.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:37 | 1863656 Thadius T. Crunk
Thadius T. Crunk's picture

The water lubricates the fault lines in the rock. There are more earthquakes on average but they are much less intense. It has been suggested that the San Adreas fault should be "fracked" to lube it up and trade a huge and infrequent earthquake with more common small ones.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:47 | 1863686 cossack55
cossack55's picture

Riiigggghht. Scientists screwing around with nature always works well.  How about we inject the geoligists into the New Madrid fault.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:29 | 1865026 Seer
Seer's picture

"Scientists screwing around with nature always works well."

Actually, with the exception of the particle accelerators*, scientists have little direct affect, it's the technicians (commanded by corporations and govts) that do the "acts."

* In nearly all cases scientists playing in a lab can have little affect on greater humanity; particle accelerators, however, might be the one case where an experiment may trigger some bigger result (we've got no real idea what the possible ramifications could be).  Oh, I'd have to add biological mucking about as a possible exception as well.

I'd suggest rewording to "Humans screwing around with nature always works well."

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:54 | 1863706 blu
blu's picture

Small earthquakes are too small and localized to releave any real stress. We are always told that here in CA, when we have a small quake. Everyone says "oh great we need more of those to avoid the Big One" and then the State geologists trot out and say "sorry you would need thousands of quakes that size to do any good. The Big One is that big."

That's what they say, anyway.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 20:04 | 1863742 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Even if they could frack enough, there's no way they could reliably model such a complex, unknown system. It would be scientific SWAG at its finest.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 21:36 | 1864096 knukles
knukles's picture

Of course.  Unlike the admirably superb job done with falsified global warming data.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 05:36 | 1865029 Seer
Seer's picture

Repeat a lie long enough and it becomes fact, right?

Fact: Humans DO have an impact on the planet.

Fact: Global climate change DOES occur.

Fact: Corporations use propaganda to counter things that could hamper their profiteering.

Fact: Energy companies have a LOT of power (in both senses).

Yes, data is often biased, but that doesn't mean that the underlying premise is incorrect.

So, climate change IS happening, whether climate change deniers exist or not.

I now leave you to fight your fight against "global WARMING conspirators." (meanwhile global climate change, which WILL bring about the next glacial period, continues, affected by humans)

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:37 | 1863658 Clay Hill
Clay Hill's picture

Injection is nice...

but I'd rather be blown.

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:38 | 1863663 Yen Cross
Yen Cross's picture

 Fill the fault with " Bull Shit". 

Wed, 11/09/2011 - 19:38 | 1863664 fbrothers
fbrothers's picture

I was fracking with this girl I knew. It appeared she liked fracking more than I did. That had never happened to me before or since. For a while I thought that there was some interal damage, but it just went away.

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