While Oklahoma has had a handful of notable earthquakes over the past century, it was essentially never an earthquake state.
And rightfully so, given that the USGS and other officials, up until quite recently, ranked Oklahoma’s earthquake hazard level at the second lowest level, with a patch of slightly elevated, but still moderately low areas:
According to the statistics that have been released, Oklahoma, in fact, had very few earthquakes (over a magnitude o 3.0) during the past half century – until the year 2009.
That date marks the expansion of fracking in the oil industry, as the Obama Administration signaled an attack on coal and fossil fuels, and the petroleum industry sought to flood market supply to manipulate the political power of oil in certain key regimes around the world:
Now, the low key heartland state of Oklahoma is suddenly rivaling San Frascisco as the most earthquake-prone place in the United States.
According to the Daily Mail:
Oklahoma is the most at risk place in America for man made earthquakes caused by oil and gas drilling, a new USGS quake risk map has revealed.
In its annual national earthquake outlook , the U.S. Geological Survey reported Wednesday that a large portion of Oklahoma and parts of central California have the highest risk for a damaging quakes this year: between 5 and 12 percent.
Natural elevated quake risks exist through much of California, Seattle and the area where Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Kentucky and Illinois come together, known as New Madrid.
Seismologists say Oklahoma’s problem is triggered by underground injections of huge volumes of wastewater from oil and gas drilling.
From 1980 to 2000, Oklahoma averaged only two earthquakes a year of magnitude 2.7 or higher.
That number jumped to about 2,500 in 2014 then to 4,000 in 2015 as the use of an oil and gas production technique that uses millions of gallons of water boomed.
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