Strong Earthquake Rattles Oklahoma, Felt in 7 Other States
Oklahoma City's KOCO 5 News reports that the first and strongest earthquake was Oklahoma's largest since 2011.
The 4.7 earthquake was felt in 8 states including Kansas! Everything you need to know https://t.co/3s1BOLyaHR @USGS https://t.co/0RzI1bYPSj— KWCH Eyewitness News (@KWCH Eyewitness News)1447926828.0
According to Reuters, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said the 1:42 a.m. quake's epicenter was centered 8 miles southwest of Cherokee, Oklahoma, with a depth of 3.8 miles.
KOCO 5 News reported that there were two additional Cherokee quakes on Thursday: a 3.1 magnitude earthquake at 3:46 a.m. and a 3.7 magnitude earthquake at 6:03 a.m.
While there have been no reports of significant damage, both Oklahoma and Kansas have seen repeated seismic activity over the past decade, especially in recent years. The frequent temblors have been tied to the states' drilling booms.
The Oklahoma Geological Survey concluded that the injection of wastewater byproducts into deep underground disposal wells from fracking operations has awakened the state's dormant fault lines.
Oklahoma now has more earthquakes than anywhere else in the world, a spokesperson from the Oklahoma Corporation Commission reported.
Before 2009, Oklahoma felt two earthquakes per year, but now there are two per day, EcoWatch reported in September. This year, roughly 700 earthquakes of magnitude 3 or higher has shook the state compared to a mere 20 in 2009.
Sierra Club threatens to sue four #Oklahoma #fracking companies for causing #earthquakes. https://t.co/wNfSVbzBGn … https://t.co/ME3ozbjiRv— Tim Ream (@Tim Ream)1446602093.0
In a joint statement last year, the USGS and the Oklahoma Geological Survey said that the risk of a damaging earthquake—one larger than magnitude 5.0—has significantly increased in central Oklahoma.
As for Kansas, the Washington Post reported last month that the number of earthquakes in the state have jumped from only four in 2013 to a whopping 817 in 2014.
The quakes happen so often that officials in both states have been forced to shut down multiple disposal wells. The Oklahoma Corporation Commission, which oversees the Sooner State’s oil and gas industry, required changes to 500 disposal wells around the state, including the shutdown of wells near Cushing, Oklahoma, which holds one of the largest crude oil storage facilities in the world.
The Kansas Corporation Commission also decided to limit the underground injection disposal of saltwater from oil wells in April.
In August, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin admitted that there was a “direct correlation between the increase of earthquakes that we’ve seen in Oklahoma [and] disposal wells.” Fallin, however, must weigh the pros and cons of fracking in her state, as the sector provides a significant number of jobs.
Still, thousands of disposal wells in both states are still in operation, which suggests that the constant seismic activity is far from over.
Many Oklahoma and Kansas residents have voiced concerns about the earthquakes:
I don't think I'm ever going to get used to this whole "Earthquakes in Kansas" thing! https://t.co/Z5Tb0ooeS1 #earthquake #Kansas— Hectic Dad (@Hectic Dad)1447941105.0
Oklahoma earthquake rattles Kansas https://t.co/rAvjLbLMIq via @ICTBizJournal (woke me up - no small feat)— Bonnie D Tharp (@Bonnie D Tharp)1447943942.0
That earthquake is the first time I was fearful. It's not normal to happen like that in Kansas. Or is it now. #fracking— Joanna Chadwick (@Joanna Chadwick)1447919174.0
In addition to Oklahoma and Kansas, other major oil and gas states such as Arkansas, Colorado, Ohio and Texas have observed more earthquakes that are linked to wastewater injection activity, IBTimes reported.
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theDOCK aims to innovate the Israeli maritime sector. Pexels<p>The UN hopes that new investments in ocean science and technology will help turn the tide for the oceans. As such, this year kicked off the <a href="https://www.oceandecade.org/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">United Nations Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030)</a> to galvanize massive support for the blue economy.</p><p>According to the World Bank, the blue economy is the "sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth, improved livelihoods, and jobs while preserving the health of ocean ecosystem," <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0160412019338255#b0245" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Science Direct</a> reported. It represents this new sector for investments and innovations that work in tandem with the oceans rather than in exploitation of them.</p><p>As recently as Aug. 2020, <a href="https://www.reutersevents.com/sustainability/esg-investors-slow-make-waves-25tn-ocean-economy" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Reuters</a> noted that ESG Investors, those looking to invest in opportunities that have a positive impact in environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, have been interested in "blue finance" but slow to invest.</p><p>"It is a hugely under-invested economic opportunity that is crucial to the way we have to address living on one planet," Simon Dent, director of blue investments at Mirova Natural Capital, told Reuters.</p><p>Even with slow investment, the blue economy is still expected to expand at twice the rate of the mainstream economy by 2030, Reuters reported. It already contributes $2.5tn a year in economic output, the report noted.</p><p>Current, upward <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/-innovation-blue-economy-2646147405.html" target="_self">shifts in blue economy investments are being driven by innovation</a>, a trend the UN hopes will continue globally for the benefit of all oceans and people.</p><p>In Israel, this push has successfully translated into investment in and innovation of global ports, shipping, logistics and offshore sectors. The "Startup Nation," as Israel is often called, has seen its maritime tech ecosystem grow "significantly" in recent years and expects that growth to "accelerate dramatically," <a href="https://itrade.gov.il/belgium-english/how-israel-is-becoming-a-port-of-call-for-maritime-innovation/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">iTrade</a> reported.</p><p>Driving this wave of momentum has been rising Israeli venture capital hub <a href="https://www.thedockinnovation.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">theDOCK</a>. Founded by Israeli Navy veterans in 2017, theDOCK works with early-stage companies in the maritime space to bring their solutions to market. The hub's pioneering efforts ignited Israel's maritime technology sector, and now, with their new fund, theDOCK is motivating these high-tech solutions to also address ESG criteria.</p><p>"While ESG has always been on theDOCK's agenda, this theme has become even more of a priority," Nir Gartzman, theDOCK's managing partner, told EcoWatch. "80 percent of the startups in our portfolio (for theDOCK's Navigator II fund) will have a primary or secondary contribution to environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria."</p><p>In a company presentation, theDOCK called contribution to the ESG agenda a "hot discussion topic" for traditional players in the space and their boards, many of whom are looking to adopt new technologies with a positive impact on the planet. The focus is on reducing carbon emissions and protecting the environment, the presentation outlines. As such, theDOCK also explicitly screens candidate investments by ESG criteria as well.</p><p>Within the maritime space, environmental innovations could include measures like increased fuel and energy efficiency, better monitoring of potential pollution sources, improved waste and air emissions management and processing of marine debris/trash into reusable materials, theDOCK's presentation noted.</p>
theDOCK team includes (left to right) Michal Hendel-Sufa, Head of Alliances, Noa Schuman, CMO, Nir Gartzman, Co-Founder & Managing Partner, and Hannan Carmeli, Co-Founder & Managing Partner. Dudu Koren<p>theDOCK's own portfolio includes companies like Orca AI, which uses an intelligent collision avoidance system to reduce the probability of oil or fuel spills, AiDock, which eliminates the use of paper by automating the customs clearance process, and DockTech, which uses depth "crowdsourcing" data to map riverbeds in real-time and optimize cargo loading, thereby reducing trips and fuel usage while also avoiding groundings.</p><p>"Oceans are a big opportunity primarily because they are just that – big!" theDOCK's Chief Marketing Officer Noa Schuman summarized. "As such, the magnitude of their criticality to the global ecosystem, the magnitude of pollution risk and the steps needed to overcome those challenges – are all huge."</p><p>There is hope that this wave of interest and investment in environmentally-positive maritime technologies will accelerate the blue economy and ESG investing even further, in Israel and beyond.</p>
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