Recent North Texas Earthquakes Were Induced: Researchers - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Tracking earthquakes and their effect on North Texas

Recent North Texas Earthquakes Were Induced: Researchers

More than 1,000 earthquakes have occurred on faults not active for 300 million years, per report produced by SMU, USGS

    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    Recent North Texas Earthquakes Were Induced: Researchers

    A new report concludes that recent North Texas earthquakes were induced, likely a result of wastewater injection wells, as opposed to occurring naturally. (Published Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2017)

    A new report concludes that recent North Texas earthquakes were induced, likely a result of wastewater injection wells, as opposed to occurring naturally.

    The report was published late last month by the journal Science Advances, and was prepared by researchers with Southern Methodist University and the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

    There have been a surprising number of earthquakes in what is known as the Fort Worth Basin in recent years — as many as 1,300 since 2013, according to the new report. The vast majority of those earthquakes have been minor — between a magnitude 1 to 4 — and many would have either never or barely been felt.

    The frequency of the earthquakes that have been recorded in Texas has increased dramatically in recent years. Between 1847 and 1994 — a period of 147 years — there were more than 110 recorded earthquakes of magnitude three or greater, according to the Texas State Historical Association.

    Domino's Pizza Launches Outdoor Delivery

    [DFW] Domino's Pizza Launches Outdoor Delivery

    Domino's Pizza is tweaking its home delivery service for those times you're not at home.
    After years of delivery right to your doorstep, Domino's drivers will now deliver to outdoor locations.
    That includes beaches, parks, landmarks, and other outdoor locations across the country.
    Domino's says its drivers will deliver to 150-thousand locations from the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, to the "Welcome to Las Vegas" sign.
    The locations are now active and show up in the company's app or website as "Domino's Hotspots."
    Customers pre-pay for their orders, select a location, and your pizza is on the way.
    Previously, Domino's delivered to offbeat locations, but, the new service sets up designated drop off points.
    The service was tested last fall in Miami before being rolled out nationwide.

    (Published Monday, April 16, 2018)

    Between 2008 and 2016 — a period of 8 years — there were 96 recorded earthquakes of magnitude three or greater, according to the new report.

    There are ancient fault lines that run below North Texas. The researchers looked deep into the rock record to come to the conclusion that the recent round of earthquakes has been induced.

    “In the Fort Worth Basin, along faults that are currently active, there is no evidence of prior motion over the past 300 million years,” SMU noted in a news release.

    “The study’s findings suggest that the recent Fort Worth Basin earthquakes, which involve swarms of activity on several faults in the region, have been induced by human activity,” noted Michael Blanpied, associate coordinator of the USGS Earthquake Hazard program.

    The Texas Railroad Commission (RRC) regulates the oil and gas industry in Texas and it has consistently stopped short of recognizing wastewater injection — the process of injecting water and chemicals produced as a byproduct of oil and gas extraction into underground zones for the purpose of safely and efficiently disposing of the fluid — as a likely cause of the recent earthquake swarm.

    “The Railroad Commission has long recognized the possibility of induced seismicity related to fluid injection,” noted Gaye McElwain, a spokesperson for the Texas Railroad Commission.

    Canada Lawmakers Hold Moment of Silence

    [DFW] Canada Lawmakers Hold Moment of Silence

    Canadian lawmakers wore hockey jerseys on Monday to honor the victims and their families of that tragic bus crash in Canada that killed 16 people.
    The bus was carrying the junior league Humboldt hockey team to a game when a tractor-trailer slammed into the bus.
    Sixteen were killed and thirteen people were injured in the crash.
    Today's remembrance was one of a number of events that honored the team and their families.
    Earlier the lawmakers honored Rusty Staub, a major leaguer who played for the Montreal Expos and the New York Mets.

    (Published Monday, April 16, 2018)

    McElwain said that the RRC has in place “some of the most stringent rules in the nation to address the issue.”

    Recently, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) commended the Texas RRC’s underground injection control program, according to McElwain.

    “During 2016, the number of recorded seismic events in North Texas dramatically decreased. EPA highly commends the RRC for its actions to address this situation, including implementation of changes in permitting and operation requirements,” the EPA noted.

    Get the latest from NBC DFW anywhere, anytime

    • Download the App

      Available for IOS and Android