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    The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...


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    The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  HigherLove on Sun Apr 17, 2011 7:06 am

    WASHINGTON — Millions of gallons of potentially hazardous chemicals and known carcinogens were injected into wells by leading oil and gas service companies from 2005 to 2009, a report by three House Democrats said Saturday.

    The report said 29 of the chemicals injected were known or suspected human carcinogens. They either were regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act as risks to human health or listed as hazardous air pollutants under the Clean Air Act.

    Methanol was the most widely used chemical. The substance is a hazardous air pollutant and is on the candidate list for potential regulation under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

    The report was issued by Reps. Henry Waxman of California, Edward Markey of Massachusetts and Diana DeGette of Colorado.

    The chemicals are injected during hydraulic fracturing, a process used in combination with horizontal drilling to allow access to natural gas reserves previously considered uneconomical.

    The growing use of hydraulic fracturing has allowed natural gas production in the United States to reach levels not achieved since the early 1970s.

    However, the process requires large quantities of water and fluids, injected underground at high volumes and pressure. The composition of these fluids ranges from a simple mixture of water and sand to more complex mixtures with chemical additives.

    The report said that from 2005 to 2009, the following states had at least 100,000 gallons of hydraulic fracturing fluids containing a carcinogen injected underground: Texas, Colorado, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Wyoming, North Dakota, New Mexico, Montana and Utah.

    States with 100,000 gallons or more of fluids containing a regulated chemical under the Safe Drinking Water Act were: Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Oklahoma, Mississippi and North Dakota.

    The report said many chemical components were listed as "proprietary" or "trade secret."

    "Hydraulic fracturing has opened access to vast domestic reserves of natural gas that could provide an important stepping stone to a clean energy future," the report said.

    "Yet, questions about the safety of hydraulic fracturing persist, which are compounded by the secrecy surrounding the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing fluids. This analysis is the most comprehensive national assessment to date of the types and volumes of chemical used in the hydraulic fracturing process."

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    Last edited by HigherLove on Thu May 05, 2011 8:17 am; edited 6 times in total

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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  mudra on Tue May 03, 2011 3:50 am

    Max Igan - Radio Skidrow - Fracking - 05/03/11 - 1/2

    Note : first few minutes are dedicated to Bin Laden
    Fracking starts at 5:00

    Love Always

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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  HigherLove on Tue May 03, 2011 8:22 am

    South Rising and Sinkholes May Be Related

    In what may become one of the most important papers ever written, Michael Wyesession of Washington University in St. Louis and his graduate student Jessie Lawrence, now at UC, discovered a massive ocean deep under the earth.

    Here is a summary of the findings:

    Pay particular attention to the figures at the top of the link. It shows that not only is there this vast deep reservoir under China but also there is one under the Untied States.

    Some may be familiar with my theory of core heating caused by the death stars. But whatever the cause of this heat wave coming up from the center of the earth, it would be hitting these reservoirs and causing the water to heat and surge up through the earth.

    Also note that under Australia there is water. There is a lesser amoount there but it is closer to the surface and note that these figures were compiled three years ago so the situation may have changed since that time.

    I found that the methods used to create geothermal wells called fracking result in massive numbers of small quakes and sometimes even larger quakes. In fact, fracking has been forbidden near Berne because it has caused quakes resulting in millions of dollars of damage to the city and was ordered stopped. Likewise the fracking at The Geysers in California was causing similar quakes and stopped.

    Then over the last few weeks I began to see these quakes in California near hot springs that are acting just like human fracking quakes only there is no human fracking going on there. These are the Redondo quake near the Redondo mud volcano, Borrego, Big Bear, The Geysers, and one in Nevada east of Mammoth Hot Springs. I think that these quakes may be due to an increase in geothermal activity from the heat pulse coming up from the core.

    Now we are seeing the giant sinkholes in China and also in the US, giant sinkholes are opening from California to Texas. I can't help but think that these may be the result of this water being heated and coming up through the earth and fracking the area underneath the sinkholes. Sinkholes are also observed during human fracking of geothermal wells.

    Human fracking can be one of three ways. One is simply to pump water in at high pressere, the second is shocking or hammering the underground formation using pressure shocks delivered through the injected water, and the third is using chemicals to eat away the rock. The goal is to create a path of fractured rock through which water can be circulated and heated by the geothermal region under the earth and then broght back up to the surface for use in heating.

    What we appear to be seeing is heated water from these deep newly discovered reserviors coming up toward the surface. This would be occuring because of the heat pusle traveling out from the core and is creating pressure fracking in areas under the ground and these seem to be occuring in California at existing known hot springs.

    As far as the South Rising, the water in that area seemes to be closer to the surface and so it may be comming up in a broad front rather than through fissures as in the deep reservoirs.

    I would expect to see some geyser activity. We saw a new geyser at Kamchatka last year and this may be from the heating of the China reservoir.


    Of Fracking, Earthquakes, and Carbon Sequestration

    Hydraulic fracturing — the process of drilling and then pumping fluid deep into a formation to generate fractures or cracks, typically for extracting natural gas from shale formations — has been under fire lately, owing to concerns that it contaminates drinking water. But while Congress debates proposed legislation that would impose new restrictions on the technology, an entirely different concern related to fracturing — or "fracking" — is emerging: It may trigger earthquakes.

    The claim is not new, but attention to it has been renewed following a June 2 earthquake recorded at Cleburne, Texas — the first in the town’s 140-year history — and four subsequent smaller quakes, none with a magnitude greater than 2.8. Speculators assert that what’s causing the temblors is fracking, which began in earnest in 2001 in the Barnett Shale, a geologic formation said to be the nation’s richest gas field. A geologist has yet to confirm the claim.

    At the same time, fracking-related quake concerns are mounting in northern California, around The Geysers region, where start-up company AltaRock Energy is looking to tap geothermal energy in a demonstration of Engineered Geothermal Systems technology. The technology essentially pumps water into the earth, creating fractures in the hot dry rock (Figure 3). The water then flows into the fissures, creating a reservoir of very hot geothermal fluid that is continuously heated, and when it is returned to the surface, the pressure decrease produces steam, which is used to turn a turbine. That project has secured more than $36 million from the DOE and has the backing of several large venture capital firms.

    3. Cracks that run deep. Hydraulic fracturing—a process that involves drilling and then pumping fluid deep into a formation to generate fractures or cracks—has been thought to cause earthquakes, most recently in Cleburne, Texas, where fracturing, or “fracking,” is used to extract natural gas from shale. But Alta Rock’s geothermal demonstration plant, which uses Engineered Geothermal Systems technology (shown here) has also come under scrutiny because the project proposes fracturing hard rock more than 2 miles deep in an area overlying two fault lines. Courtesy: Department of Energy

    But it has caught bad press from The New York Times, which points out that the project proposes fracturing hard rock more than 2 miles deep in an area overlying two fault lines. The newspaper draws similarities between the Alta Rock demonstration and a Swiss geothermal prospecting project in Basel, which is believed to have triggered a massive earthquake on Dec. 8, 2006, after prospectors drilled 3 miles into a significant fault.

    Alta Rock has disputed the comparison, saying that Basel sits on top of a large (200-km long) "locked" fault that previously ruptured and heavily damaged the city in the 14th century. "We carefully chose our site to avoid Basel’s problems," the company said in a statement. "There has been geothermal energy production at the Geysers since 1965. AltaRock’s project is located in a seismically active area adjacent to smaller faults (the closest faults are 3 and 11 km long) which are not ‘locked’ due the constant stress relief resulting from small seismic movements."

    Can Fracking Cause Earthquakes?
    There is no consensus among geologists on whether drilling causes earthquakes. But, according to Dr. David Oppenheimer, a seismologist with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the fracking process could certainly generate seismic activity "because that is how the fractures are made," he told POWER in July. Concerning the Alta Rock project, he said, "After the fractures have been established at the Geysers and an enhanced geothermal system has been implemented where cold water introduced in the injector flows through the fractures to the second well to return to the surface, it is possible that seismicity could be induced due to thermal contraction of the reservoir rock."

    There are also certain conditions that could trigger a large earthquake, and foremost among them is "sufficient, pre-existing tectonic stress," conditions that exist at The Geysers because the geothermal field is located near the Pacific-North American plate boundary, he said. "However, even in areas like Colorado, far from a plate boundary, a magnitude 5.3 quake was induced by pumping of waste fluids into a deep disposal well at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal." With regard to fracking and earthquakes associated with natural gas extraction, Oppenheimer said that the pressures introduced by the process would have to exceed a "minimum compressive tectonic stress" to encourage an earthquake. "If the hydrofracture pressures are lower, then no fractures should occur," he said.

    Implications for Carbon Sequestration
    The fracking-quake debate raises questions about whether geological carbon sequestration — storing carbon dioxide by injecting it deep within geologic formations — could prompt quakes. Dr. Christian Klose, a geophysical hazards research scientist from Columbia University, says it could — as much as any geological fluid injection can. He told POWER in July that three processes could trigger seismic activity, large and small: pore fluid pressure changes; fluid mass (volume) changes, which can cause stress on the rock; and migration of the CO2 through the rock over decades to centuries. "CO2 is buoyant since its density is [lower] than saline water deep in the crust," he said. "Thus it will come upward through cracks and fractures and faults — even in so-called cap rocks are rock discontinuities that cause leakages."

    Klose said that the quake risk is intensified by hydrofracturing, a process that is recommended by the DOE’s Midwest Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnership to provide a better injection rate into rocks that have moderate porosity and low effective permeability. The recommendation comes as one of several "lessons learned" from a sequestration field test at FirstEnergy’s R.E. Burger Plant near Shadyside, Ohio, in the Appalachian Basin.

    But, according to Traci Rodosta, a geological sequestration project manager for the National Energy Technology Laboratory, quake risk is well-assessed during research and development of any given project. "Potential sequestration reservoirs are thoroughly characterized prior injection," she told POWER. "In order to eliminate and reduce the potential for fault activation and slippage along preexisting fractures that could be caused when injecting fluids at high pressures, regulatory agencies limit injection rates and pressure to avoid unintentional hydrofracturing. CO2 storage projects would operate under similar guidelines, and the risk managed through site characterization, injection design, and monitoring."


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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  HigherLove on Tue May 03, 2011 8:28 am

    Geothermal energy vs. hydraulic fracturing (stuff on the geysers in here):

    Some questions:

    1. Are we depleting the water source at the Geysers by only returning 25% of what we remove? The severe drought in California is probably also contributing to the depletion.

    2. Could this geothermal process and/or the depletion of water be causing the continuous minor earthquakes in the area?

    3. Are these man-made quakes vs. natural quakes?

    At The Geysers the magma is believed to exist at least four miles below the earth's surface. The heat from the magma radiates to the layers of rock above heating water in the pores and fractures of the hot rock. A small portion of the heated water may rise to the surface causing hot springs, geysers, and fumaroles. At The Geysers, the reservoir water boils to steam and is trapped by an overlying layer of tight, unfractured rock, called cap rock.

    Wells, some more than two miles deep, drill through the cap rock and tap the natural steam, which is piped to our 15 operating power plants at The Geysers complex. In the process steam is cleansed of tiny particles of rock that could damage turbine blades. Steam is then put to work spinning turbine generators in the power plants to create electricity.

    Turbines are designed to operate with steam at 350 degrees Fahrenheit and 100 ponds of pressure per square inch. About two million pounds of steam per hour are necessary to operate a 110- megawatt-generating unit. After passing through the turbine, spent steam goes through a condenser where it is cooled and turns back into water. With existing technology, Calpine recycles approximately 25 percent of the water back into the steam reservoir with the remainder lost to evaporation.


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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  mudra on Tue May 03, 2011 10:10 am

    Thanks for opening this thread HigherLove .
    A very important subject .
    I meant to post the following the other day . But it fits perfectly in the development your are giving to your thread.

    <font color="#006600">San Joaquin Valley,


    <font color="#990000"><font size="+2"></font></font>

    <font color="#990000">The World's Largest Sink Hole?</font>

    Looking at the above map you can clearly see that the
    California Central Valley is a long depression. It was formed eons ago
    by subduction, IE sinking into the Earth. In the article below we
    first ran into this story that California was riddled with under water
    caverns that were filled with water and some that had oil or gases on top.

    In our search for the "Porous Earth" we have already
    uncovered hundreds of miles of subterranean cave systems that literally
    are found under every nation on Earth. Now in the report below it details
    the caverns from a US Navy point of view... and coincides with our other
    research on the Submarine
    base at Hawthorne Nevada
    and the report below supports that study.
    We then started on a hunt for some real geological evidence, which we will
    present below...

    <font color="#990000">The Underground Empire - Branton
    -- File No. 008</font>

    In March of 1980, John J. Williams, a New Mexico "Patriot" who published the anti-Communist oriented "REBEL MAGAZINE" (at the time available from: Consumertronics Co., c/o John J. Williams. Pres., 2011 Crescent Dr., P.O. Drawer 537., Alamogardo, NM 88310) revealed some incredible details on an alleged subterranean system which the Navy had been exploring below the western United States. The report appeared in issue No. 6 of his magazine, and was later reproduced in the Fall, 1985 (#164) issue of SEARCH Magazine, at the time edited by Marjorie Palmer, widow of the late Ray Palmer. The article, titled 'CALIFORNIA FLOATS ON OCEAN?', revealed
    the following:

    "Some time ago, I heard a man on a TV interview-show briefly mention that parts of California and neighboring states are floating on the Pacific Ocean! He was a high ranking Naval officer on a top- secret nuclear submarine that has been (and is) exploring and mapping these enormous caverns and passage-ways underneath the West for over 10 years now.

    "A friend of mine finally tracked the man down. He is now living quietly in retirement and asked that no details pointing to him be revealed as he does not want publicity and government attention. After writing this article, I destroyed my files on him. This is his story..."

    Williams explains that not "all" of the areas in question are actually "resting" or "floating" on the ocean, however there are allegedly many subterranean cavities below the western U.S., and they are not limited to California, and many of them consist of very large water-filled aqua-systems. These have been explored via nuclear submarines to several hundred miles inland, particularly in the region of southern California and the southern Oregon - northern California area. Williams continues:

    "...When he retired several years ago, in spite of about 10 years of intensive Naval study, the Navy had not gotten even a handle on their exacts and dimensions.Today, the story may be different.

    "He makes the following statements from his observations:

    "1. The passageways are labyrinthine with widths from a few to thousands of feet (caverns), averaging roughly about a 100 feet.

    "2. Much like dry caverns do, heights and depths vary a great deal and in some cases, two or more caverns or passageways pass over or under each other at different depths.

    "3. Most of the entrances lie just off the Continental Shelf (ie. in the Continental Slope - Branton).

    "4. Most of the entrances are too small for submarine investigation; and many that are large enough lie in waters that are too deep.

    "5. Some of the caverns (in S. California) are topped with oil while some others are filled with gases believed to approximate our atmosphere (in very ancient times).

    "6. The San Joaquin Valley is essentially a portion of the original cavernous area that collapsed eons ago due to it's sheer weight.

    "7. What is being passed off as the 'San Andreas Fault' are large, unsupported chambers that are in the process of collapsing. When the BIG ONE finally hits, many scientists in the know believe that most of California will break off like a cold Hershey bar and slide into the ocean! (it is postulated by some that an ancient land-mass which some believe may have been connected to what is now California, broke off and sunk into the ocean during an ancient cataclysm - Branton)

    "8. (We are deleting this section due to the possibility of undue stress and fear which may result from it's disclosure.
    Also, because of recent international events which may have resulted in a solution to this problem. We will merely state that it involves a scenario similar to that which was portrayed in a James Bond movie, and which concerned underground caverns, silicon valley, nuclear weapons, and the
    San Andreas fault - Branton).

    "9. A WELL-KNOWN U.S. nuclear submarine lost its way in these passages and disappeared forever. It was reported to have been lost IN OPEN SEA ELSEWHERE to keep the American people in total ignorance and to justify an enormous pay-off to an eccentric U.S. billionaire (who died in recent years)
    for providing the fictitious "recovery" effort.

    "I have no reason to doubt the man. I can't tell for sure whether or not these caverns and passageways exist or to their extents. The story does sound a bit fantastic but I have no reason to doubt the man. I have seen copies
    of documentation that at least prove that he was a high ranking Naval officer (nuclear submarine duty) and a distinguished scientist. In fact, his scientific background and reputation are impeccable. He definitely cannot be labeled as a crackpot, lunatic or publicity-seeker. I would very much like more information on this topic..."

    <font color="#006600">The Geological Proof</font>
    <font color="#006600">Long Beach California</font>

    Any one that has ever visited Long Beach California has seen the oil pumps all over the city, near the beaches and even in the port. Where is all this oil coming from? Those very underground chambers mentioned above. Below is an excerpt from the History of Long Beach... the part most pertinent to our study...

    <font color="#000099">In the late 1930s, oil was discovered under Long Beach harbor. Its production helped Long Beach recover from
    the Depression and provided revenue to support expansion and modernization of the harbor as well as enriching individuals who owned land in the area.
    As a result when land near the oil field began to sink, those who were profiting from pumping the oil out from under the land resisted any suggestion that there could be a link between oil production and subsidence. They
    hired experts to defend their position. As the subsidence continued, those whose property was damaged by the sinking, but who were not benefiting from the oil production, hired experts to determine what was really causing
    the sinking.</font>

    <font color="#000099">While the controversy continued, the land kept sinking. </font><font color="#990000">It sunk like a big bowl and the bottom of the bowl was more than 25 feet below its previous elevation.</font><font color="#000099"> Some warned that if the sinking continued, the ocean might inundate the city. The Navy Shipyard was near the bottom of the bowl and the Navy didn't own the mineral rights of the Shipyard so they were suffering damage but receiving no benefit </font><font color="#990000">so in 1958 the Navy sued all of the oil operators.</font><font color="#000099">Although the suit was never litigated or settled, it helped to convince many people that a proposed solution, pumping water into the fault blocks where the oil had been taken out, should be implemented. And that solution stopped the sinking.</font>

    <font color="#000099">The production of oil from under the harbor led geologists to explore the area under the tidelands and submerged lands off Long Beach and oil was discovered to be there as well. This discovery led to a struggle between the city, to whom the state had granted the tidelands in 1911, and the state and federal governments over control of the oil revenue. Eventually the state and city were forced to divide the money.</font>

    <font color="#000000">SOURCE: The
    Virtual Oral/Aural History Archive

    <font color="#990000">So there we have our first piece
    of proof... Long Beach is held up by water as they use sea water to replace
    the oil they take out. The land sank 25 feet in only a few years.</font>

    <font color="#990000">But what about San Joquin Valley?</font>[/size]
    [size=14]<font color="#990000"></font>
    <font color="#006600">San Joaquin Valley, California</font>

    <font color="#006600">Subsidence Overview</font>

    <font color="#006600"></font>

    <font color="#990000">Image
    from USGS, 1977

    <font color="#990000">They say a picture is worth a thousand words. This illustration shows how much the Valley sank from 1925 to 1977. The photograph above illustrates subsidence in the San Joaquin Valley, California. In the photo, USGS scientist, Joe Poland shows subsidence between 1925 and 1977 due to fluid withdrawel and soil consolidation</font>

    <font color="#660000"></font>
    <font color="#660000">Excerpt from</font>

    <font color="#660000">Association
    of Environmental & Engineering Geologists

    <font color="#003300">Land subsidence can result from fluid (e.g. groundwater, petroleum) withdrawal in weakly consolidated materials. The loss of fluid causes consolidation of the empty pore spaces, which means that any voids in the soil previously filled with fluid are compressed by the mass of the overlying materials, effectively decreasing the soil volume and resulting in land subsidence. Examples of places experiencing land subsidence due to fluid withdrawel and subsequent soil consolidation
    include: the San Joaquin Valley, California; Houston, Texas; Phoenix, Arizona;
    and Venice, Italy.</font>

    <font color="#003300">Geologists and engineers work together to develop computer models of areas undergoing subsidence and monitor fluid removal and subsidence rates in those areas. To avoid damage to new development, geologists identify and study areas containing materials undergoing, or susceptible to, subsidence, then provide recommendations for minimizing or preventing future subsidence. </font>- SOURCE

    There are many causes of Subsidence, collapses of natural caverns, collapses of man made tunnels such as mining operations, natural sink holes created when underground rivers wash away the soil beneath, and pumping out of oil pockets and more important, under ground aquifers.

    All in all the Earth is VERY Porous indeed. So as this group of enginners shows us, the San Joaquin Valley first created by subsidence eons ago... has sunk over 30 feet in 50 years and is still sinking. Considering how important this area is to food production in the USA, this is very serious

    <font color="#663366">Subsidence due to compaction of fine-grained sediments began in the San Joaquin Valley in the 1920's and in the Sacramento Valley in the 1950's. The area most affected has been in the southern and western parts of the San Joaquin Valley (fig.93). Approximately one-half of the valley, or about 5,200 square miles, had subsided at least 1 foot by 1977; the total volume of subsidence was greater than 17 million acre-feet. The land surface declined nearly 30</font><font color="#663366"> feet from the 1920's to the late 1970's in an area southwest of Mendota (fig. 94). Importation of surface water and reduction in ground-water withdrawals during the 1970's slowed or stopped the decline of ground-water levels.
    In many cases, this allowed recovery to pre-1960's water levels and prevented further land subsidence.</font>

    <font color="#663366"><font size="+1"></font></font>

    <font color="#000000">Ground Water Atlas of the United States - Segment 1 California Nevada</font>

    A recent U. S. Geological Survey (USGS) report (Galloway and others, 1999) shows that sustainable development of our land and water resources depends on improved scientific understanding and detection of subsidence. The report features nine illustrative case studies that demonstrate the role of subsurface water in human-induced land subsidence (
    More than 80 percent of the identified subsidence in the United States is a consequence of human impact on subsurface water, and is an often overlooked environmental consequence of our land and water-use practices. The increasing development of our land and water resources threatens to exacerbate existing land-subsidence problems and initiate new one (fig.1).

    Land subsidence is a gradual settling or sudden sinking of the Earth's surface owing to subsurface movement of earth materials.
    Subsidence is a global problem and, in the United States, more than 17,000 square miles in 45 States, an area roughly the size of New Hampshire and Vermont combined, have been directly affected by subsidence. The principal causes are aquifer-system compaction, drainage of organic soils, underground mining, hydrocompaction, natural compaction, sinkholes, and thawing permafrost (National Research Council, 1991). Three distinct processes account for most of the water-related subsidence--compaction of aquifer systems, drainage and subsequent oxidation of organic soils, and dissolution and collapse of susceptible rocks.

    SOURCE: Land
    Subsidence in the United States December 2000

    <font color="#006600">Some Major Aquifers in the USA</font>

    <font color="#FFFFCC"><font size="+2"></font></font><font color="#990000">Some of the areas where subsidence has been attributed to the compaction of aquifer systems caused by ground-water pumpage. Credit: USGS</font>


    <font color="#FFFFCC"><font size="+2">.</font></font>

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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  HigherLove on Wed May 04, 2011 5:47 pm

    Thank you, mudra. Once again you have given more than a college try. This is great information. Scary and strange, but still great, too!

    Its da Wave

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    Re: The Fracking Problem: Carcinogenic water, sinking valley of Central California, underground bases in Hawthorne?...

    Post  mudra on Fri Aug 26, 2011 8:18 am

    It's Official: Human Activity Can Cause Earthquakes
    AUGUST 24, 2011


    Human Activity Is Officially Acknowledged to Cause Earthquakes
    The United States Geological Survey is America's official expert on earthquakes. It's the Federal agency charged with monitoring, reporting on, researching and stressing preparedness for earthquakes.

    So I was surprised to read the following statement by the USGS:

    Earthquakes induced by human activity have been documented in a few locations in the United States, Japan, and Canada. The cause was injection of fluids into deep wells for waste disposal and secondary recovery of oil, and the use of reservoirs for water supplies. Most of these earthquakes were minor. The largest and most widely known resulted from fluid injection at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal near Denver, Colorado. In 1967, an earthquake of magnitude 5.5 followed a series of smaller earthquakes. Injection had been discontinued at the site in the previous year once the link between the fluid injection and the earlier series of earthquakes was established. (Nicholson, Craig and Wesson, R.L., 1990, Earthquake Hazard Associated with Deep Well Injection--A Report to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 1951, 74 p.)
    Injection Wells Can Induce Earthquakes
    The New York Times noted in February:

    Researchers with the Arkansas Geological Survey say that while there is no discernible link between earthquakes and gas production, there is “strong temporal and spatial” evidence for a relationship between these quakes and the injection wells.

    For decades, scientists have been researching induced seismicity, or how human activity can cause earthquakes. Such a link gained attention in the early 1960s, when hundreds of quakes were recorded in Colorado a few years after the Army began injecting fluid into a disposal well near the Rocky Mountain Arsenal.

    Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory points out:

    Induced seismicity [i.e. earthquakes] in oil and gas production has been observed ever since the 1930s, i.e., ever since large scale extraction of fluids occurred. The most famous early instance was in Wilmington, California, where the oil production triggered a series of damaging earthquakes. In this instance the cause of the seismicity was traced to subsidence due to rapid extraction of oil without replacement of fluids.


    In the last decade a number of examples on earthquake activity related to oil and gas production as well as injection of liquids under high pressure have been observed, although not with as serious consequences as for Wilmington. Almost all induced seismicity associated with petroleum extraction can be traced to either fluid injection or extraction. In some recent cases injection of produced water (excess water extracted during oil and gas extraction) has produce significant seismic activity. Examples are in Colorado and Texas where gas and oil production yield large volumes of water that must be put back underground. In some cases the water cannot be put back exactly where it was produced and over pressurization of the water causes induced seismicity.

    Lawrence Berkeley Lab provides details:
    Fluid pressures play a key role in causing seismicity. Explained in simple terms, fluids can play a major role in controlling the pressures that are acting on the faults. The fluid pressure in the pores and fractures of the rocks is called the pore pressure.


    Injecting fluids into the subsurface is one way of increasing the pore pressure and thus allowing the faults and fractures to “fail” more easily, thus inducing an earthquake.

    That is why in many cases induced seismicity is caused by injecting fluid into the subsurface or by extracting fluids at a rate that causes subsidence and/or slippage along planes of weakness in the earth. Figure 2 is an example of induced seismicity being caused by water injection. Figure 2 is a cross section of the earth showing the location of the earthquakes (green dots), the locations of injection wells (thick blue lines) and production wells (thin lines, these wells extract fluid). Note the large number of events associated with the injection wells.

    more at the link

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    Post  mudra on Wed Jun 13, 2012 3:06 pm

    Hydraulic Fracking 1/4 Contaminants

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