Quakes Turn Texas Towns Against Fracking
Denton might become state's first town to ban it
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Jun 22, 2014 8:36 AM CDT
In this April 19, 2013 photo, vapor shoots from a natural gas well owned by Eagle Ridge Operating LLC, in Denton, Texas.   (AP Photo/The Denton Record-Chronicle, David Minton)

(Newser) – Earthquakes used to be unheard of in the Texas towns of Azle and Reno. But from November to January, the area experienced 34 perceptible tremors, and while they were all minor, topping out at magnitude 3.6, residents are spooked—and blaming the local fracking industry, NBC News reports. Studies elsewhere have shown that injecting fracking wastewater into the ground can cause quakes. A study is currently being done to see if that's the case here, but residents at a recent public forum made clear that they don't want to wait the years it will take to complete it. "They want to shut those wells down," the mayor of Reno said, to rousing applause.

Azle and Reno aren't alone, either. The city council in Denton, Texas has ordered a temporary stop to all fracking, as it considers a proposal to ban it outright, the AP reports. Fracking has driven Denton's economy for more than a decade, but drillers there have defied city rules requiring them to line wastewater pits, and forbidding them from burning waste gas in residential areas. "I think the people of Denton really want to keep the livability of the town," one resident said. "And fracking is pretty obtrusive."

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Ezekiel 25:17
Jun 24, 2014 9:46 PM CDT
We've had up to 5.2 magnitude quakes that were caused not by fracking but disposal wells. That one destroyed a few homes nearest to the epicenter. Also knocked the turrets off an 1875 Catholic monastery and college. It has lead to clusters of quakes in the 3.5 to 4.2 range. Strangely, they occur right after the start of the disposal well work time, 6:30 AM. One was 6:40 AM and the next day it was 6:37AM with same location and same disposal well operating. The physics is there as I can lift 20-ton weight with my finger using the right hydraulic jack. They are pumping water in those wells at thousands of PSI and something does have to give. Its a money issue as its way cheaper to pump the water down the well hole than taking it to a treatment plant.
Jun 23, 2014 12:43 PM CDT
Why is it that the if you look at a map of where possible fault lines are you see there is one very small one near Dallas and secondly there is millions of track jobs going on all over the us why hasen't anybody else reported earthquakes and I believe that this is the second time I've heard of earth quakes in this area and they put the blame on frack jobs as well, I agree they should investigate on where the earth quakes are coming from but to put the blame on something that could cause more people to loose there jobs because your trying to be some hippie
Jun 23, 2014 8:02 AM CDT
Have some friends in Denton that are truly concerned about the tremors. When they try to ask questions about them the oil bosses snap back that the citizens are too stupid to understand what going on. The Republicans giving the oil companies carte blanche to do anything they want may be the biggest problem.