• 17 hours Saudi Fund Buys Stake in Hollywood Talent Agency
  • 22 hours Putin Is A New Russian Stalin - Victory For The Next 6 Years
  • 4 days Is $71 As Good As It Gets For Oil Bulls This Year?
  • 17 hours G20 Rejects Calls for Cryptocurrency Regulation
  • 13 hours Country With Biggest Oil Reserves Biggest Threat to World Economy
  • 14 hours Trump Bans Venezuelan National Cryptocurrency
  • 8 hours Self-Driving Cars' First Fatality
  • 16 hours Volkswagen To Announce $340 Million Tennessee Investment To Build New SUV For U.S. Market
  • 17 hours Africa Is The New Land Of Opportunity For Investors
  • 4 days HAPPY RIG COUNT DAY!!
  • 4 days Russian hackers targeted American energy grid
  • 21 hours Miners against Government: Largest Miners In Congo Quit Chamber Of Commerce Amid Growing Tax Dispute
  • 13 hours Is Trump Harming Oil Industry?
  • 4 days Spotify to file $1 billion IPO
  • 13 hours Tillerson just sacked ... how will market react?
  • 4 days Oil Boom Will Help Ghana To Be One Of The Fastest Growing¨Economies By 2018!
The Oil Canal That May Never Be

The Oil Canal That May Never Be

Thailand’s Kra canal project could…

Shale-Related Seismic Activity Rises In Texas, Report

Texas Oil

Oklahoma is the state that springs to mind whenever earthquakes and oil are mentioned in the same sentence, but a fresh report from the Academy of Medicine, Engineering and Science of Texas has revealed that the shale oil industry’s activity in the Lone Star State has led to changes in seismic activity.

The report found that while between 1975 and 2008 the average number of quakes above a magnitude of 3 was one or two, between 2008 and 2016 it increased to 12 to 15 a year. The TAMEST task force that authored the report noted that this increase has been linked not to fracking itself, however, but to wastewater disposal wells, which is in line with findings from other studies.

As to whether contaminated water from these disposal wells could seep through into subsoil aquifers that may supply drinking water, the report found that this is highly unlikely, adding, however, that more research was necessary to quench public concern about this potential problem.

The other commonly cited problem with shale oil and gas—greenhouse gas emissions—is naturally present here as well, although the authors of the report note the beneficial effects of state and federal regulation targeting these emissions.

One other serious problem identified by the TAMEST task force had to do with road infrastructure and the number of accidents resulting from the major increase in traffic due to the shale boom across the state. The development of one well in the Permian, for example, needs 997 trucks in all. For the Eagle Ford, the total required is 1,708. Most existing roads in Texas were not built with the shale industry in mind, and they are now suffering the wear and tear from this heavy traffic. As a logical consequence of this heavy traffic, accidents have increased in frequency and severity.

Generally, shale oil and gas development has been good for Texas economically. It has also, in some ways, at least, been better for the environment than conventional oil. The authors said, “The vast number of new wells drilled in shale formations in Texas since 2007 have had substantial spatial impacts on the landscape. However, horizontal wells have a smaller impact than the equivalent number of vertical wells would have had. When operators use a single well pad for multiple wells, surface impacts are significantly reduced.”

For now, it seems that the good that comes from oil and gas production in the Anadarko Basin, Eagle Ford, the Permian, the Barnett, and the Haynesville shale plays outweighs the bad. The industry employs more than half a million people and contributes tens of billions to the state coffers.

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:

Join the discussion | Back to homepage

Leave a comment

Leave a comment

Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News