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Energy and Environment

Oklahoma Oil Regulators Add Restrictions Following Quake

Oklahoma Corporation Commission
A map of the area affected by the most recent restrictions.

State regulators in Oklahoma have put new restrictions on oil and gas activity. The changes were made after a 4.5 magnitude earthquake struck the northern part of the state Tuesday night.

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission says its earthquake team is taking action following Tuesday night's quake that hit Pawnee. Two months ago, the same area that was struck by a record-setting 5.8 magnitude earthquake, the largest in the state's history.

The U.S. Geological Survey says Tuesday night's quake was felt in Kansas, including Wichita, and parts of northern Missouri.

Thirty-eight wells are in the affected area, 15 of which were shut down in September. Following the new order, four new wells in the area will be shut down and 10 others will have to reduce disposal volumes.

Scientists have linked Oklahoma's sharp increase in earthquakes to the underground disposal of wastewater from oil and gas production.


Follow Abigail Beckman on Twitter @AbigailKMUW.

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