Monday, December 6, 2010

Is shaking natural in the Natural State?

Even before I read it in the paper, I noticed that central Arkansas was having a plethora of earthquakes. I even posted something about it on my Facebook page.

I have always been interested in such things, so I signed up with the U.S. Geological Survey for notification via email whenever there is an event.

Looking at the cumulative number of shakers, even though they are minuscule by comparison to some around the country, the number of them that have occurred is somewhat alarming. I can't help but wonder just what is going on. Since that time, a few months ago, there have been plenty more--some as high as a magnitude of 4.0, though most are far less.

I haven't felt any of them, but I have a friend who swears she has. She lives near the lake. That makes sense. As the earth moves, it creates movement in the water, similar to the sloshing of the water in a bathtub. That would stand to reason that such an area would be more vulnerable and could enhance the shaking. Out of curiosity, the USGS should measure the area around the lakes.

My friend has noticed cracks in her home that have never been there before. Funny, we have noticed that too. There seem to be more cracks in the foundation and above doorways. While I'm not terribly worried about the house falling down around us, I have certainly noticed a difference.

There have already been two earthquakes this morning. Rarely does a day go by that the earth doesn't rattle a bit. So much for the steady ground beneath our feet...

While geologists seem to have dismissed the notion that drilling for natural gas, oil, and whatever naturally-occurring minerals and other resources being sought. They claim that activity below the terra firma is not responsible for this seemingly sudden occurrence.

I'm not convinced.

While I have no scientific data nor even a theory on which to hang my hat, it just seems to me, using a little common sense, that frequent drilling beneath the earth's surface on a regular basis has to have some effect--and not in a good way.

If anyone reading this has noticed anything in the way of cracking in houses, new sink holes, anything else out of the ordinary, post a comment.