PA Officials Trying To Find Out If Recent Earthquakes Are Linked To Fracking
Pennsylvania environmental regulators want to determine whether five recent minor earthquakes were caused by fracking operations nearby. Fracking has been linked to earthquakes in Ohio and other states. Jim Letizia reports.
The earthquakes happened 50 miles north of Pittsburgh and three-quarters of a mile from a natural gas well owned by Houston-based Hilcorp Energy. No damage or injuries were reported. Fracking has never before been linked to earthquakes in Pennsylvania, which is the nation's number 2 state for natural gas production. State officials are examining geolocic data Hilcorp collected during and prior to drilling. In March of 2014, Hilcorp's fracking operations were blamed for causing 77 earthquakes in Poland Township, Ohio. A study last year by geologists at Miami University said those quakes are potentially among the largest caused by fracking in the U.S. Ohio regulators have banned Hilcorp from fracking seven existing wells, and creating new ones on the pad nearest the quakes.