The Cushing earthquake in Oklahoma that caused damage to buildings and happened at 7:44 p.m. local time, was reported by the U.S. Geological Survey to have had a 5.0 magnitude.

A follow-up article by Live Science has suggested that the swarms of earthquakes west of the Rockies may, in some circumstances be linked to human activity suchashydraulic fracturing.

Cushing earthquake second large one in 2 months

About 8 weeks ago, a 5.8 magnitude earthquake happened about 40km from Cushing, in the Pawnee area and since then a series of about 18 smaller quakes ranging from 2.5 to 4.5 have been reported.

The west of the Rockies has much more frequent and strong earthquakes but according to the USGS site, people tick the "did you feel it" from further distances when the quakes happen in the east. People from Missouri, Texas and even Kansas reported feeling the Cushing quake.

Human activity may cause many of the seismic events

According to Live Science, "mounting evidence suggests that human activity may be causing an uptick in earthquakes in the state." In September, the USGS said that since 2009, earthquake magnitude in Oklahoma has been increasing and that much of this could is attributed to human-induced seismic activity such as hydraulic fracturing.

Why would humans want to fracture rocks? It seems that there is a range of reasons for this, which includes the extraction of gas, groundwater, stream for geothermal heating and oil. However, according to the USGS, it is not easy to "pinpoint" the exact source of any such activity that may have caused a quake as the locally felt seismic activity could have been triggered by a source some distance away.

There are so many seismic events it could be very difficult to say for certain who or where such operations triggered them. For example, earthquake tracker.com says that in Oklahoma, there have been:

  • 2 earthquakes today (6 Nov)
  • 24 earthquakes in the past 7 days
  • 139 earthquakes in the past month
  • 2,199 earthquakes in the past year

Gas and oil importantreserves for the state

Dan T. Boyd Oklahoma Geological Survey said in his paper titled "Oklahoma Oil: Past, Present, and Future," that oil in Okhlamoa was very important to the development of the region.

In the "10 years between the first discovery well and Statehood," Oklahoma became the largest oil-producing entity in the world in 1907. Todaythe state is still important in terms of gas and oil reserves.

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