Agency releases plan for wastewater disposal well operators

The Associated Press

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission is urging the shut-down of seven wastewater disposal wells in a swath of the state that has been rattled by a swarm of earthquakes.

Charles Lord, left, senior hydrologist, explains the mapping procedure used by the Corporation Commission to chart fault lines, earthquakes and disposal wells, as Jim Marlatt, right, Oil & Gas Specialist, looks on from his desk, in Oklahoma City, Monday, Nov. 30, 2015. State regulators have taken steps to try and curb the number of quakes, working with disposal well operators in the area to have them reduce the volume in disposal wells or shut them down entirely. At least seven earthquakes rattled north-central Oklahoma on Monday, including one felt as far away as Iowa. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

 

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — The Oklahoma Corporation Commission is urging the shut-down of seven wastewater disposal wells in a swath of the state that has been rattled by a swarm of earthquakes.

The commission's oil and gas conservation division released its recommendations Thursday, calling for four disposal wells near the Byron-Cherokee area and three near Medford to stop operations. The agency also says it's alerted dozens of disposal wells in that area to prepare for possible changes to operations.

A 4.7 magnitude earthquake struck about 15 miles southwest of Medford on Monday. That temblor was followed by more than a dozen earthquakes of magnitude 2.5 or greater.

Some scientists say injection of massive amounts of the byproduct of oil and gas production — chemical-laced wastewater — deep into the earth has induced the quakes.

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