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Title: The spatial footprint of injection wells in a global compilation of induced earthquake sequences

Abstract

Fluid injection can cause extensive earthquake activity, sometimes at unexpectedly large distances. Appropriately mitigating associated seismic hazards requires a better understanding of the zone of influence of injection. We analyze spatial seismicity decay in a global dataset of 18 induced cases with clear association between isolated wells and earthquakes. We distinguish two populations. The first is characterized by near-well seismicity density plateaus and abrupt decay, dominated by square-root space-time migration and pressure diffusion. Injection at these sites occurs within the crystalline basement. The second population exhibits larger spatial footprints and magnitudes, as well as a power law–like, steady spatial decay over more than 10 kilometers, potentially caused by poroelastic effects. Far-reaching spatial effects during injection may increase event magnitudes and seismic hazard beyond expectations based on purely pressure-driven seismicity.

Authors:
ORCiD logo; ORCiD logo
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Univ. of California, Santa Cruz, CA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1541700
DOE Contract Number:  
SC0015539
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Journal Name:
Science
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 361; Journal Issue: 6405; Journal ID: ISSN 0036-8075
Publisher:
AAAS
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
Science & Technology - Other Topics

Citation Formats

Goebel, Thomas H. W., and Brodsky, Emily E. The spatial footprint of injection wells in a global compilation of induced earthquake sequences. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1126/science.aat5449.
Goebel, Thomas H. W., & Brodsky, Emily E. The spatial footprint of injection wells in a global compilation of induced earthquake sequences. United States. doi:10.1126/science.aat5449.
Goebel, Thomas H. W., and Brodsky, Emily E. Thu . "The spatial footprint of injection wells in a global compilation of induced earthquake sequences". United States. doi:10.1126/science.aat5449.
@article{osti_1541700,
title = {The spatial footprint of injection wells in a global compilation of induced earthquake sequences},
author = {Goebel, Thomas H. W. and Brodsky, Emily E.},
abstractNote = {Fluid injection can cause extensive earthquake activity, sometimes at unexpectedly large distances. Appropriately mitigating associated seismic hazards requires a better understanding of the zone of influence of injection. We analyze spatial seismicity decay in a global dataset of 18 induced cases with clear association between isolated wells and earthquakes. We distinguish two populations. The first is characterized by near-well seismicity density plateaus and abrupt decay, dominated by square-root space-time migration and pressure diffusion. Injection at these sites occurs within the crystalline basement. The second population exhibits larger spatial footprints and magnitudes, as well as a power law–like, steady spatial decay over more than 10 kilometers, potentially caused by poroelastic effects. Far-reaching spatial effects during injection may increase event magnitudes and seismic hazard beyond expectations based on purely pressure-driven seismicity.},
doi = {10.1126/science.aat5449},
journal = {Science},
issn = {0036-8075},
number = 6405,
volume = 361,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {8}
}