Another fracking earthquake

There has been a second earthquake in Blackpool, close to the site where Cuadrilla have recommenced their fracking activities. As a precaution they have again called a temporary halt to drilling. The previous earthquake, at the beginning of April, had a similar seismic signature. Read the BBC news story here

Regarding the April 1st earthquake (no April fool joke!), the British Geological Survey site says

Any process that injects pressurised water into rocks at depth will cause the rock to fracture and possibly produce earthquakes.

It is well known that injection of water or other fluids during the oil extraction and geothermal engineering, such as Shale gas, processes can result in earthquake activity.

We are unable to conclusively say if the magnitude 2.3 ML earthquake that was related to ongoing hydrofracturing at the Preese Hall drill site.

Our epicentre places the earthquake approximately 2 km from the drill site, which falls within the area of error.

However, our depth of 3.6 km is poorly resolved as the nearest station is 80 km away from the epicentre. This means that the depth errors are large.

Instrumentation much closer to the site, as well as a detailed record of dates and times of injection are required to identify any relationship between the injection process and any seismic activity in future.

So the question to BGS is – is the instrumentation closer now?

The question to Cuadrilla is – have you released records of the dates and times of injection?

And the questions to Tim Yeo are –

are you SURE

There appears to be nothing inherently dangerous about the process of “fracking” itself …?

It’s not just air quality and water contamination that folks have reason to be concerned about, is it?

It would be interesting to know if there is a link, wouldn’t it?

Say NO to Shale Gas; or you may just feel the earth move


About bp_berry

growing, cooking, photographing, eating, protecting and celebrating
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5 Responses to Another fracking earthquake

  1. Gina Hams says:

    Hi bp

    What is our next move in our area – Montcuq. Are we waiting for the government to move on this after the elections or is there anything organised for the near future tha t I should know about. ?

  2. bpberry says:

    Nothing organised that I know of, other than that Schiste Happens is planning an English language leaflet to let second home owners and visitors know about the issues. I think that whilst there are some ongoing protest in France, most of us are waiting to see what happens in the Senate tomorrow. At least then we may have some clarity over exactly what is to be banned and what is to be allowed.

  3. Gina Hams says:

    Thanks for the reply. GH

  4. duncan says:

    Hydraulic Fracturing is as old as the drilling business. zillions of bbls of junk have been injected into wellbores all over the world for over a hundred years. To focus on a cupple of bad instances where the fresh water wells have been affected is for “fear mongers”, and green people with an unrealistic understanding of the world.

    • bpberry says:

      Oh that old argument. Yes hydraulic fracturing has been used for a few decades now, but what is different now is the widespread use of horizontal drilling and then fracturing. The geology of shale gas deposits is quite different from that where purely vertical wells are used – then fracturing is employed to get at some of the more hard to extract deposits. The use of fracking with horizontal drilling is creating a different scenario and the required proliferation of wells increases the likelihood of problems. Huge quantities of water and additives are being used to extract shale gas – vastly greater than historic usage. This water has to be dealt with – and let’s face it there is now real evidence of contamination – it’s not just a few weirdos and eco warriors who are concerned. Those with a concern for the real future of our planet and the health of all the life forms on it are saying that this just isn’t the way to go. We don’t need to lay waste to some of the most beautiful areas of the planet. Even if the risk is small – why take it ? Just for greed? You can inject junk into the depths of your back yard if you like; but please don’t expect me to welcome you putting it in mine, or my neighbours, or my community’s

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