Wastewater Wells Are Shaking Oklahoma

Some fracking-wastewater wells -- especially those in which great volumes of water reach crystalline basement rock that lies close to a fault -- induce earthquakes that otherwise might not have happened for hundreds of years.

Oklahomans have enough trouble with tornadoes.

Photographer: Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images

Not so many years ago, earthquake science was no more relevant to Oklahoma than marine biology. But these days the state is shaking way more often than California, and giving many people there an unwanted crash course in seismology.

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