The expanded use of injection wells and fracking has brought about a significant increase in earthquakes in places that didn’t have very many before. Wastewater injection in Oklahoma increased earthquake totals from dozens per year to over 900 in 2015 before collapsing oil prices reduced the use of the technique. Increased earthquakes in Alberta, Canada were triggered by fracking in that area.
American Electric Power (AEP) is investing $4.5 billion to build the largest wind farm in the United States at a site in the Oklahoma panhandle. Known as the Wind Catcher Energy Connection, the 2-gigawatt wind project will include 800 2.5-megawatt wind turbines built by General Electric.
According to a new report from the U.S. Geological Survey, millions of people living in Oklahoma and parts of Kansas face significant potential for damaging earthquakes this year as a result of human activity. The only other part of the continental United States facing a similar danger is California, which has natural faults lines slicing through the state.