Gail Atkinson

More Frack Quakes Rattle Alberta, Cause Deaths in China

By Andrew Nikiforuk, The Tyee

On Monday Albertans living around the oil-service city of Red Deer, got an early morning wake-up call – a 4.6 earthquake. Vesta Energy, a privately owned oil and gas company, halted its fracking operations west of the city after the company most likely triggered the quake that temporarily shut down power to nearly 5,000 residents. It was one of the largest recorded tremors ever to shake central Alberta. A day later, Mar. 5, the provincial energy regulator ordered the company to suspend fracking operations and report all seismic data for the last three months. The order announced the regulator was suspending operations at the well site “in order to protect the public and the environment.” Among the harms fracking induced earthquakes can cause are “adverse effects to the environment, public safety and property damage and/or loss,” said the order. The widely felt earthquake rattled dishes, cracked walls and swayed buildings. “Crazy loud...