This Article will delve into the possibility of wastewater injection wells as being the ultimate cause of the increased seismic activity in the United States. First it will outline the background of hydraulic fracturing and the water usage involved in the fracturing process. Next it will discuss the wastewater fluids as a by-product of the fracturing process and the resulting need for wastewater injection wells. Next this Article will outline the regulation of these fluids through the federal government and the state governments, with an emphasis on Texas and Ohio regulations. Lastly, this Article will outline two recommendations which will attempt to curtail the injection well-induced seismic activity problem: first by implementing quantitative field level permitting requirements, and second by expanding the implementation of water recycling techniques in the oil and gas industry.
Shake, Rattle, and Oil: The Environmental Impacts of Wastewater Injection Wells on Earthquakes and Water Usage,
Tex. A&M J. Prop. L.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.tamu.edu/journal-of-property-law/vol2/iss3/2