Scientists are finding a large increase in the number of small earthquakes in the midcontinent of the U.S. They suspect wastewater wells, whose numbers are growing as the oil and gas industry increases hydrofracturing.
The salty, toxic wastewater that's used in hydrofracking and other gas drilling is likely to blame for small earthquakes in the Midwest, a new study from the U.S. Geological Survey concludes. The water is pumped deep underground, where it lubricates faults and causes them to slip.
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