Mid-Continent Section

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Oklahoma Earthquake Maps


General availability of easy to use and accurate GIS mapping software allows the media and individual citizens to access publicly available data, map relationships, and draw their own conclusions regarding cause and effect of geologic phenomena. In no case is this more clearly demonstrated than recent seismicity in Oklahoma, where the public has arrived at the obvious conclusion that there is a spatial and temporal relationship between the occurrence of earthquakes and oil and gas activity. It is incumbent on creative geologists with access to the same data as well as more sophisticated software packages to make a series of geologic observations and interpretations, and then provide testable hypotheses, such as those presented in this paper. We are, after all, unrepentant pattern recognition junkies, but we are also armed with the geologic knowledge to draw fact-based conclusions rather than speculative connections.