4.4 Eq in West Texas? What's going on here?

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posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:10 AM
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4.4 W Tx - USGS


Sunday, September 11, 2011 at 07:27:45 AM at epicenter
Magnitude
4.4

Depth
10.3 km (6.4 miles)

126 km (78 miles) SE of Lubbock, Texas


I grew up in this region and spent over 25 years there, and never felt a single Eq. There was one in the news a decade or so ago when I was at TTU in Lubbock, but it was a 2.-something and I slept through it that morning without noticing. That 2.something was claimed to have been a natural gas well explosion.

So this 4.4 is pretty dang big for West Texas, I actually am unsure if this is natural or possibly a man-made accident. I'll go search some Tx newspapers for answers after lunch.

I wonder if this is due to a gas well explosion of immense proportions, or is it a natural earthquake due to tectonic activity?

I would have to say that in my 30 years of life, that West Texas is not prone to any types of earthquakes and it has one of the lowest historical incidences of eq activity versus almost any other places on the map.

Here is a link to the wiki on the region and some science info about it.
Permian Basin


The Permian Basin gives its name to a large oil and natural gas producing area, part of the Mid-Continent Oil Producing Area. Total production for that region up to the beginning of 1993 was over 14.9 billion barrels.


You can find remnants of things like shells and other ancient aquatic life in this region. It apparently used to be underwater at some point in ancient times.

Just some background info on the region and the incident today. It's quite odd imho. A 4.4 would be a pretty huge gas explosion don't you think?

I'll try to find more info in a few min after a bite to eat.




posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:16 AM
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Link at EQ Report

Here is a report from FOX News in Lubbock TX

The FOX report actually has some substance guys, since there is very little about this on the web currently. It just happened 5-6 hours ago or so.

If this is natural and not a gas well explosion, than I wonder if it is related to the EQ activity in Colorado, Oklahoma, etc?



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:17 AM
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Wow that's pretty strange. I grew up in Midland and have never heard of any earthquakes out there and never experienced any. I'm going to call some of my family out there and see what they have to say about it.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:17 AM
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got any fracking going on there? How deep was the EQ. Epicenter?

*Yikes 6.4 miles, thats not Fracking that's Mother Nature... Even if you take into account their probability of error on the location its not Fracking..
edit on 11-9-2011 by Old77 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:19 AM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


I know they are fracking for oil in Catarina, Texas...fracking causes earthquakes.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:22 AM
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I will vote against fracking as the cause. My reasoning is that the quake was 6.4 miles deep and they are not drilling anywhere near that depth.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:23 AM
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Originally posted by Old77
got any fracking going on there? How deep was the EQ. Epicenter?


Di d Fracking Cause the Virginia EQ? Evidence from W Virginia Texas and Arkansas

Perhaps this article may be of interest?

If you Google "Fracking West Texas" you will find over 2 million hits.

I cannot find a comprehensive list of known sites yet however. I know they must exist, and the access is probably public. So I will keep searching, see if we can match this site up with any known active wells.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:27 AM
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Originally posted by Aggie Man
I will vote against fracking as the cause. My reasoning is that the quake was 6.4 miles deep and they are not drilling anywhere near that depth.


The Hydrolic Fracturing wiki claims that :


Hydraulic fracturing enables the production of natural gas and oil from rock formations deep below the earth's surface (generally 5,000-20,000 feet or 1,500-6,100 m). At such depth, there may not be sufficient porosity and permeability to allow natural gas and oil to flow from the rock into the wellbore at economic rates. Thus, creating conductive fractures in the rock is essential to extract gas from shale reservoirs because of the extremely low natural permeability of shale, which is measured in the microdarcy to nanodarcy range.[4] Fractures provides a conductive path connecting a larger area of the reservoir to the well, thereby increasing the area from which natural gas and liquids can be recovered from the targeted formation.


That is 1 to 4 miles depth.

This 4.4 today was a little over 6 miles depth. Over 30,000ft.

Good point. Does anyone know the particular geology of the area and could estimate what depth the wells in the general region are on average?



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:28 AM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


I found this...Out West, geologists have blamed fracking on earthquakes that unexpectedly shook up the state of Arkansas, which recently saw over 20 small tremors in a single day. Freak earthquakes have also occurred in regions of Texas, New York and Oklahoma that should not be likely sites of epicenters, though those locales have all seen a rise in fracking in recent years.

Multi-stage fracking, which can drill several miles deep in the Earth, has only become prevalent in recent years. Once introduced, however, Arkansas, West Virginia and Texas all saw an unexpected increase in quakes across the region. The correlation has caused concern in other parts of the country, including West Virginia, where residents are asking lawmakers to reconsider the legality of fracking, which can not only cause earthquakes but is overall detrimental to the local ecosystem. One incident in central Virginia occurred in 2008 when fracking caused an explosion of a natural gas pipeline that created a fireball that stretched up to half a mile long and tall and injured five people.

from here rt.com...



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:33 AM
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They are doing a Mass Casualty Training Exercise In Texas Scheduled For This Weekend,
www.abovetopsecret.com...
You never know what FEMA has up their sleeve.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:36 AM
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Originally posted by Old77
got any fracking going on there? How deep was the EQ. Epicenter?

*Yikes 6.4 miles, thats not Fracking that's Mother Nature... Even if you take into account their probability of error on the location its not Fracking..
edit on 11-9-2011 by Old77 because: (no reason given)


If this is mother nature than I must admit I am perplexed. This is a very rare location for an event of this magnitude.

If we look at the bigger picture of odd eq's in recent weeks throughout North America it does seem very interesting. It seems that areas which are historically stable and inactive are becoming more active. It is small movements in comparison to the larger movements in other places more famous for quakes but it is still movement none-the-less.

The whole entire North American continent appears to be moving, but I do not know any specifics or details about it. Other people who are more into this would probably have graphs and diagrams for us to review in this regard. That would be helpful in trying to get a grasp on what type of activity we are beginning to see and what it's historical precedence is.

The USGS history appears to date back as far as the late 1800's, 1882 being the oldest listed. USGS link

I assume we could find records back at least as far as the early to mid 1800s however , and they would only be personal reports with very little accuracy or information.

With our very limited data base to look over, this earthquake's location is seemingly unprecedented, although there is a healthy history of eq activity surrounding this particular location. You can find a history of notable quakes to the north, south, east and west, but very little corresponds to the western-central zone within Texas.

I did mention prior gas well explosion events but this post is reflecting on the possibility that this could be entirely natural in causation rather than related to our technology.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 11:52 AM
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I live in far west Texas. There have been quite a few earthquakes this year in that area (Snyder / Post / Big Spring area). If you look at a map, this area is off the caprock, or just on the edge of it. It could be from fracking, or it could be perhaps that the caprock is moving around as one solid piece.

For those who don't know, the "caprock" is a large, flat, and very big chunk, or escarpment, of calcium carbonite. Basically one solid rock which resists erosion. The earth has seismically active lately, and that area of Texas, parts of Oklahoma and Arkansas have been rumbling.

I figure if there are big earthquakes in the area, we will ride the caprock like a raft on the ocean.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 12:07 PM
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There is some belief that reservoirs are connected to earthquakes and from what I understand there is a resevoir 45 miles from Lubbock.


In numerous parts of the world today, including some of the most highly developed countries, many dam designers and operators have tended to close their eyes to the engineering problems posed by reservoir-induced earthquakes. One sometimes hears these kinds of defensive arguments: (1) no convincing correlation has yet been demonstrated between earthquakes and reservoirs; (2) since the natural seismicity at a given site is low, the danger of reservoir-inducement is therefore also low; (3) the geology at a given site is different from that at localities where major reservoir-induced events have occurred; (4) only three or four out of some 11,000 large dams worldwide have experienced significant induced earthquakes, and one should therefore not worry about a given site; and (5) no dam has yet failed disastrously because of a reservoir-induced earthquake, and the danger is thus grossly exaggerated. While many of these arguments have some elements of truth to them, they are essentially evading the primary issues: Virtually every careful study has concluded that there is indeed a cause-and-effect relationship between some earthquakes and some reservoirs, and two dams (Koyna, India, and Hsinfengkiang, China) have in fact come uncomfortably close to disastrous failure during such events. Furthermore, it is precisely in the regions of low natural seismicity where the major existing problems lie, because in areas of high seismicity dams are usually designed for substantial earthquake resistance anyway.


link to article www.johnmartin.com...



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 12:08 PM
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4540 Lamesa Highway, Snyder, TX 79549 (Patterson Petroleum)

Down the Street from the well.
neic.usgs.gov...

OIl & Gas as of 2005 - perhaps out dated but gives you a good idea
www.beg.utexas.edu...

Occurred at a location 2 hours between Abilene, Tx and Lubbock Tx in a town called Snyder.
Patterson Petroleum most likely has a well their.

32.874°N, 100.804°W - These coordinates show a source of water next to the quake location..Perfect for the Drill Well site.

Ariel view probably not the most up to date thus you do not see a well there.

This is a bad problem because a quake this large with both towns so close by. They are old towns and with a 4.4 I bet a lot of people felt it. Though a lot of updating has been done, the down town districts still resemble the mid 19th century as far as the architecture...not meant for EQ's of this magnitude or higher.. There is a chance of Damage in Snyder, Tx..It was really close to the epicenter.

Sounds like the Gas Drilling companies are going much deeper than allowed and the public is not being told. I presume we will see more of this become the norm.
edit on 11-9-2011 by Old77 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 12:15 PM
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reply to post by Old77
 


Interesting information. Hmmm.

So the possibility that this could be man-made does still exist, and if it does than it reveals corruption possibly because the depth was over 6miles? (If indeed this plays out to be the case).

Ok, I won't discount the possibility just yet, and will consider it on the table with the other explanations such as natural activity.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 12:24 PM
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reply to post by marzabeth
 


It appears that you are proposing an alternative theory that perhaps this could be the result of a domino effect originating from something like a large body of water. This is possible, but we won't know without in depth investigation and we may need experts with better resources to aid in that process.

I recall people discussing the weight distribution of the Three Gorges Dam and how it could lead to seismic activity or even potentially altering the tilt of the Earth's axis.

There could be something to this, but it would require us to identify a location and show how it lead to a quake 6 miles underground, which will likely prove exceedingly difficult.

I am open to a possibility like this but it will require a lot of work to substantiate it.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 12:33 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash
reply to post by marzabeth
 


It appears that you are proposing an alternative theory that perhaps this could be the result of a domino effect originating from something like a large body of water. This is possible, but we won't know without in depth investigation and we may need experts with better resources to aid in that process.

I recall people discussing the weight distribution of the Three Gorges Dam and how it could lead to seismic activity or even potentially altering the tilt of the Earth's axis.

There could be something to this, but it would require us to identify a location and show how it lead to a quake 6 miles underground, which will likely prove exceedingly difficult.

I am open to a possibility like this but it will require a lot of work to substantiate it.


Are we talking about aquifers here?

Here is a PDF map of the "Dockum" aquifer, which covers the region of this EQ:

www.twdb.state.tx.us...

Here is some information (PDF) about the aquifer:

www.twdb.state.tx.us...

It appears as though this aquifer is much more shallow than the 4.4 EQ.

EDIT: Never-mind...after re-reading, I see we are talking about man made reservoirs. Nonetheless, the links above do give us a glimpse of the subterranean geologic structure of the region.
edit on 11-9-2011 by Aggie Man because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 01:03 PM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


I found this

A fluid injection-induced seismicity experiment was conducted in the German Continental Deep Drilling Program (KTB) main borehole at 9.1 km depth (in situ temperature of 260°C) to extend knowledge about stress magnitudes and brittle faulting to depths and temperatures approaching the brittle-ductile transition. Almost 400 microearthquakes were induced at an average depth of 8.8 km by injection of KBr/KCl brine into a ∼70 m open hole section near the bottom of the borehole.


8.8 km is roughly equal to 6 miles.

link to JOURNAL OF GEOPHYSICAL RESEARCH www.agu.org...



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 01:06 PM
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I wonder if this is a result of the exceptional drought they are in? If the water table is drying up, that is bound to change things down below the surface of the Earth.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 01:12 PM
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It seems to me that the drought, coupled with the large amount of water needed for hydro fracking could definitely be putting geological stresses on the land in Texas...I wouldn't be surprised if they found some large sinkholes in the area.





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