Hydraulic Fracturing/Fracking

USGS Graphic.

Newsmaker: Geologist says unpredictability, data complicate study of fracking-linked quakes

The U.S. Geological Survey is preparing to map the proximity of man-made earthquakes to wastewater injection wells from oil and gas drilling, and a top researcher says access to seismic and hydraulic fracturing data and the unpredictability of induced quakes will prove the agency’s biggest challenges.

USGS Research Geophysicist Justin Rubinstein, who contributed to a recent report forecasting the risks of earthshaking near regions with heightened seismicity, told EnergyGuardian that the nature of man-made quakes makes them far more difficult to project.

USGS Graphic.

USGS releases models of wastewater quake risks as lawmakers debate fracking safety

A hearing before the House Science committee showed the sharp divide over the seismic hazards of hydraulic fracturing and wastewater disposal as the U.S Geological Survey released its first pass at modeling the risks of earthquakes induced by human activity.

"Potentially induced seismicity greatly increases the seismic hazard in Oklahoma and in the other induced seismicity zones," the USGS report said. 

But Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., told the Science committee hearing that he thinks fracking-related earthquakes are being overblown.

Texas nearing decision to kill local bans on fracking

The Associated Press

The Texas legislature is considering a proposal to prevent local governments from banning hydraulic fracturing, The Associated Press reports.

More radon found in homes as drilling increases in Pa.


A study published in Environmental Health Perspectives has tracked an increase in the levels of radioactive radon gas in areas of greater drilling activity in the Marcellus Shale, FuelFix reports.

Chesapeake tops report on fracking violators

The Hill

Chesapeake Energy had more regulatory violations over fracking than any other driller in the three states analyzed by the Natural Resources Defense Council and FracTracker alliance, The Hill reports.

Warburg sinks $500M into drilling startup

Houston Business Journal

New driller Independence Resources Management LLC -- which intends to focus on unconventional shale plays in places like the Anadarko Basin – is getting $500 million in backing from private equity  firm Warburg Pincus, the Houston Business Journal reports.

Frackers showing concern over lawsuit risk from quakes

The Wall Street Journal

The fracking industry is growing more concerned about lawsuits seeking damages because of earthquakes allegedly caused by the technique, The Wall Street Journal reports.

EPA reports on hundreds of fracking chemicals

The Hill

Although sand and water are the primary substances used in fracking, an Environmental Protection Agency analysis of data from FracFocus.org found that nearly 700 chemical additives appear as well, according to The Hill.

EnergyGuardian photo

Interior fracking rule takes bipartisan beating

Calling it “frustrating,” “terrible” and “distressing,” Democrats and Republicans on Thursday ripped into the Interior Department's new rule on hydraulic fracturing as they heard testimony from the director of the Bureau of Land Management.

At a hearing of a House Natural Resources subcommittee, there was bipartisan dissatisfaction as lawmakers told BLM Director Neil Kornze that the rule was misguided – with Republicans calling the rule a unnecessary burden to industry and Democrats decrying it as too weak on environmental protection.

Maryland legislature moves toward fracking moratorium

The Associated Press

Both chambers of Maryland's legislature voted Tuesday to impose a three-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing, The Associated Press reports.


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