Coincidence Or Catastrophe?

In a brief article in the March 3, 2014 edition of TIME magazine, Denver Nicks describes Oklahome eathquakes; 11 a year at 2.0 on the Richter Scale between 1990 and 2008, as opposed to 291 in 2013.  So far this month: more than 250. 

Although I majored in math, my arithmetic is often faulty.  Nevertheless, I calculate that going from 11 a year in 18 years (roughly half an earthquake a year, but who cares?) to 291 last year is roughly an increase of about 477%.

Some are blaming fracking, but so far there is no proof.  Cornell geophysicist Katie Keranen: “the evidence is strong” that the Oklahoma incidents are caused by injecting the waste water (from fracking) into the ground.

Again, I often think it’s satire from The Onion when I read articles of this sort.  It’s not the author or the magazine that makes me boil; it’s the whole idea that fracking, according to the people that want to do the fracking, is safe.

So, it’s not fracking but the result of injecting the waste water from fracking?  The injection of waste water is thought to be the cause of a several hundred percent increase in the number of earthquakes in Oklahoma, but it’s not the result of fracking?  Am I missing something here?

And is the several hundred percent increase in the number of earthquakes just some mystical coincidence that happened at the same time fracking began in earnest?

What is more important, our water supply and the condition of our land, or the money to be made by disturbing the ground, the foundation of the planet’s outer layer?



2 thoughts on “Coincidence Or Catastrophe?

  1. Einar – Thanks so much for this commentary. I plan to share it broadly – to include old Texas pals, among the deniers in the oil / gas “bidness”. Rayburn M.


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