Fracking and Earthquakes

In Weld County, Colorado, fracking at one well has been stopped by the authorities for 20 days, in order to determine whether the fracking is associated with an earthquake of 2.6 magnitude and an earlier earthquake of 3.4 magnitude.

These are not very large earthquakes, as earthquakes go, but it is important to discover whether they are linked to fracking operations.

One theory is that fracking companies have to dispose of the toxic waste water which is the by product of fracking and they must, by the nature of the operation dispose of it underground. If the waste is stored underground near fault lines the injected waste water and chemicals may prise apart fault lines by counteracting with friction, causing rock to slip underground.

This is the first time earthquakes have been associated with fracking in Colorado but there has been an increase with earthquakes in Oklahoma and Texas in the close proximity of fracking operations.

In the United Kingdom fracking companies and the government assure us that fracking does not cause earthquakes.

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