Premier says B.C. is on ‘front-edge’ of seismic monitoring in the northeast

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FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — This week’s B.C. Oil and Gas Commission confirmation that fracking was the cause of a 4.6 August 2015 earthquake in this region has drawn Christy Clark into the debate.

In an interview with CKNW in Vancouver, the Premier reportedly indicated she’s not terribly concerned about fracking related earthquakes in northeast B.C. and how it might impact her government’s desire to push forward with the development of a B.C. LNG industry.

She was quoted as suggesting earthquakes linked to date to hydraulic fracturing are not that serious, but then she added this:

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She went on to talk about B.C. being on the front edge of monitoring northeast fracking-related seismic activity.

The Globe and Mail reports workers at the drill site about 114 kilometres from Fort St. John said the Aug. 17 quake was strong enough to sway power poles and shake pick-ups.

It also said John Cassidy, a seismologist with the Geological Survey of Canada, reported last year that in 2002-2003, before fracking started in this region, there were 24 recorded earthquakes. But in 2010 to 2011, during what it reported as the peak of fracking in the Horn River Basin, that number rose to 189.

That reportedly mirrors a pattern in the United States, where a dramatic increase in the number of induced quakes has occurred in parallel with the increase in fracking activity there since 2009.

In fact, the story said, in Oklahoma, the number of quakes has jumped — from two or three a year, to two a day.

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