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Oklahoma Approves New Method To Settle Earthquake Disputes

Joe Wertz
StateImpact Oklahoma

The staggering frequency of earthquakes in Oklahoma has caused many problems, not all of them having to do with geology. The state has now come up with a way to settle disputes that arise because of regulatory actions issued to reduce quakes, reports StateImpact.

Earlier this year oil and gas company SandRidge Energy was asked to shut down disposal wells that were thought to be causing seismic activity. The financially strapped company refused for several weeks before bowing to the threat of legal action by state oil and gas regulators. Now the Oklahoma Corporation Commission has approved new rules specifying how agency staff and disposal well operators will settle disputes.

The new rules state, in part: “The operator or staff must request a technical conference within five days of the agency issuing a directive. If neither party requests a conference, then the operator must shut down the well.”