(03/14/2012)
Following a series of small earthquakes in Braxton County, Chesapeake Energy didn't follow through with a promise to reduce deposits into injection wells, according to the Braxton Citizen News.

At least one of the quakes was near the Calhoun County line.

Chesapeake voluntarily agreed to curtail deposits of fracking solution at their Frametown injection well, while disallowing any connection with fracking and disposal methods contributing to the earthquakes.

The Braxton Citizen News pointed to a possible connection between the injection of millions of gallons of waste product being a possible cause of the earthquakes in central West Virginia.

This week, Ohio imposed tough new rules on gas-drilling waste used in fracking, saying a dozen or more earthquakes in northeastern Ohio were almost certainly induced by the injection of gas-drilling wastewater into the earth.

The Braxton Citizen News said, "The company [Chesapeake] was quick to point out that there was not significant scientific proof that injection wells cause or contribute to the frequency or occurrence of earthquakes, although the connection has been made in several states, including Arkansas.

The reduction in deposits at the Frametown well was reported in a Citizens' News article titled "Solutions deposited at Frametown injection well will be cut by 50%" on August 10, 2010, crediting Department of Environment Protection's Regulatory Compliance Mangers Gene Smith as the source.

Smith told Citizens' News Publisher Ed Given that his agency was also discussing placing seismic monitoring equipment at the well site, which has yet to happen.

The Citizens' News obtained records from the DEP pertaining to the daily deposits of waste material at the Frametown site following a confirmed January 10, 2012 earthquake.

Those records clearly show that Chesapeake Energy never followed through on that commitment to reduce the amount of waste they were disposing by 50%, except for a few days.

More than 50 injection wells are licensed in West Virginia, and ten of those are commercial wastewater-injection wells similar to the one near Youngstown, Ohio, and area struck with earthquake activity.

Chesapeake has promised to spend "several million dollars" restoring roads destroyed in rural areas in the Northern Panhandle.

The company is facing several pollution charges of dumping or disturbing streams.

See related stories:

< ahref="http://www.hurherald.com/cgi-bin/db_scripts/articles?Action=user_view&db=articles_hurherald&id=43334">WV OFFICIALS SAY BRAXTON CO. QUAKES NOT RELATED TO DRILLING - Arkansas Officials Have Different View

UPDATE: NINTH MINOR EARTHQUAKE HITS BRAXTON COUNTY - WV Officials Say No Link To Drilling Operations, Ohio, Arkansas Officials Differ


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