Raton Basin Quakes Raise Questions About Drilling

Denver (AP) Wednesday's earthquake on the New Mexico–Colorado
line is again raising questions about whether coal–bed methane
drilling might be responsible for earthquakes in the area.
Researchers looked into that possibility in 2001, after 12
earthquakes hit in an area near 10 gas wells.

Companies had pumped water into the ground in order extract methane from coal bed seams, however researchers found no proof of a connection, and the U.S. Geological Survey found that seismic activity actually subsidized as drilling continued.

The agency hasn't determined whether the magnitude–five
quake was related to the 2001 quakes.

Copyright 2005 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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