• 4 minutes Pompeo: Aramco Attacks Are An "Act Of War" By Iran
  • 7 minutes Who Really Benefits From The "Iran Attacked Saudi Arabia" Narrative?
  • 11 minutes Trump Will Win In 2020
  • 15 minutes Experts review Saudi damage photos. Say Said is need to do a lot of explaining.
  • 7 hours Ethanol is the SAVIOR of the Oil Industry, Convenience Store Industry, Automotive Supply Chain Industry and Much More!
  • 2 hours Ethanol, the Perfect Home Remedy for A Saudi Oil Fever
  • 3 mins Let's shut down dissent like The Conversation in Australia
  • 6 hours Instagram Now Banning Photos Of People At Gun Ranges, Claiming They Promote "Violence"
  • 2 hours Pepe Escobar: “How The Houthis Overturned The Chessboard”
  • 13 hours Famous Manufacturer of Anti-Ethanol Additives Proves Ethanol's Safety and Benefits
  • 18 hours Collateral Damage: Saudi Disruption Leaves Canada's Biggest Refinery Vulnerable
  • 1 day Hong Kong protesters appeal to Trump for support.
  • 1 day Saudi State-of-Art Defense System looking the wrong way. MBS must fire Defense Minister. Oh, MBS is Defense Minister. Forget about it.
  • 14 hours Trump Accidentally Discusses Technology Used In The Border Wall
  • 10 hours US and China are already in a full economic war and this battle for global hegemony is a little bit frightening
  • 15 hours One of the fire satellite pictures showed what look like the fire hit outside the main oil complex. Like it hit storage or pipeline facility. Not big deal.
Alt Text

U.S. And Russia Battle It Out Over This Huge Iraqi Gas Field

The geopolitically strategic gas field…

Alt Text

US To Supply More Than Half Of Global Gas By 2035

The United States is expected…

Professor Chris Rhodes

Professor Chris Rhodes

Professor Chris Rhodes is a writer and researcher. He studied chemistry at Sussex University, earning both a B.Sc and a Doctoral degree (D.Phil.); rising to…

More Info

Premium Content

Natural Gas: Does Hydraulic Fracturing Really Cause Earthquakes

It is concluded that a "plausible cause" of a series of small earthquakes in Texas during 2008 - 2009 is saltwater pumped deep into the earth to recover natural gas, though this explanation is not definitive. In a process known as "hydraulic fracturing", shale layers are cracked by injecting water mixed with sand under high pressure, in order to liberate trapped natural gas. According to the USGS (United States Geological Survey), there may be 200 trillion cubic feet of gas trapped in shale across America.
Seismologist, Brian Slump of the Southern Methodist University, analysed data from 11 earthquakes and by a process of triangulation managed to place the origin to around one tenth of a mile south of Dallas-Fort Worth airport, on top of a geological fault located about 15,000 feet below the surface. Slump commented that although this is an old fault, stresses upon it remain that could trigger earthquakes.

Since 2002, 13 fracture wells have been drilled in proximity to it, but the study led by Slump found that the epicentre is almost exactly on the point of a reinjection well into which 9,000 barrels of seawater/day were pumped at a depth of 10,000 - 14,000 feet. The saline "flowback" water was then pumped to the surface and disposed of by injecting it into deep rock formations, in order to avoid further treatment.

Caution has been advised by Shaopeng Huang, from Michigan University, who said that: "a causal link between a given earthquake with a particular borehole is debatable," considering the huge amount of energy implicit in even small quakes. Slump stresses that his team are saying merely that such a link is "plausible not definitive", while noting that since the cessation of saltwater injection following a third set of tremors in June, the quakes have stopped.

I am reminded of a Swiss Geothermal energy project, in which the injection of water into naturally hot rock to recover heat, also caused quakes. Evidently, one should proceed with some trepidation in mixing geology with water that is not naturally part of it.

By. Professor Chris Rhodes

Professor Chris Rhodes is a writer and researcher. He studied chemistry at Sussex University, earning both a B.Sc and a Doctoral degree (D.Phil.); rising to become the youngest professor of physical chemistry in the U.K. at the age of 34.
A prolific author, Chris has published more than 400 research and popular science articles (some in national newspapers: The Independent and The Daily Telegraph)
He has recently published his first novel, "University Shambles" was published in April 2009 (Melrose Books).
http://universityshambles.com




Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage



Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News
Download on the App Store Get it on Google Play