October 24, 2013
The new-new-news on wastewater came from the U.S. scientist on seismic technology. The results of a study revealed an interesting nexuses between water-wastewater-and-earthquakes through the oil and gas process called, fracking. The fracking process uses water and produces a “Wastewater Disposal Linked to Oklahoma Earthquake Swarm” that is linked to the highest seismic activity in Oklahoma.
The news was simply stated, “The analysis suggests that a contributing factor to the increase in earthquakes triggers may be from activities such as wastewater disposal — a phenomenon known as injection-induced seismicity, the USGS said in a statement. “These results suggest that significant changes in both the background rate of events and earthquake triggering properties needed to have occurred in order to explain the increases in seismicity,” Bill Leith, a USGS seismologist,,” reports Live Science.
The USGS and the Oklahoma Geological Survey preformed analyses determining if quakes were attributed to natural or manmade occurences reported that “More than 200 magnitude-3.0 or larger quakes have hit central Oklahoma since January 2009, a big rise in seismicity over previous levels. The most recent results show only one to three earthquakes bigger than magnitude-3 hit every year between 1975 to 2008. But between 2009 to mid-2013, the average jumped sharply to 40 earthquakes bigger than magnitude-3.”
The process of wastewater disposal in the fracking process continues to be at a tangent point for mitigation. In 2011, wastewater from the fracking process was shipped as a reclamation transfer shipping waste out of Ohio to Pennsylvania. Further, in 2012 the Marcellus Shale used recycle methods but reported the large amounts of wastewater were produced.
Within any nexuses there is a correlation and balance required, as well as identified between the factors. Within fracking water-energy will be balanced against wastewater produced and mitigated for safety, security and efficiency within process and of cost.