CARMEN, Okla. — Oklahoma Corporation Commission is directing two wastewater disposal wells to halt operations and 23 other wells to reduce volume after recent earthquakes in Alfalfa County.
Under the plan, there will be a total net volume reduction of 40 percent, according to an OCC media advisory. The wells dispose of wastewater into the Arbuckle formation.
"The plan may change based on any new data," the advisory states.
Wells within 10 to 15 miles of the earthquake activity have been advised to prepare for possible changes to operations, according to the advisory.
Aexco Petroleum and Chesapeake Operating own the wells advised to shut down.
One well owned by American Energy-Woodford LLC, one well owned by Chaparral Energy LLC, five wells owned by Chesapeake Operating, one well owned by Eagle Chief Midstream LLC, three wells owned by Midstates Petroleum LLC, eight wells owned by SandRidge Exploration and Production LLC and one well owned by Triad Energy will reduce volume by 25 percent.
A well owned by Chaparral Energy LLC, one owned by Chesapeake Operating and one owned by Midstates Petroleum LLC will reduce volume by 50 percent.
The largest of four earthquakes recorded in Alfalfa County on Thursday, a 4.7 magnitude temblor, struck at 1:42 a.m., according to U.S. Geological Survey. It was centered at Carmen, 8 miles southwest of Cherokee and 36 miles west-northwest of Enid, and was 4 miles deep. USGS records show it is the strongest earthquake recorded in Oklahoma this year.
There were reports of people feeling the temblor across Oklahoma and as far away as the Kansas City area.
Martha Robertson, who was awake at her home in Waukomis, said the earthquake lasted several minutes.
A Fairview area resident, Crissy Wilczek, posted a picture of her cracked living room wall on Facebook. She said she noticed the crack after a recent quake but it has gotten worse.
Another earthquake, measuring 3.1 magnitude, struck at 3:46 a.m. in the Carmen area, 8 miles south-southwest of Cherokee and 34 miles west-northwest of Enid. It was one mile deep.
A 3.7 magnitude quake was recorded at 6:03 a.m. at Carmen, 9 miles south-southwest of Cherokee and 35 miles west-northwest of Enid. It was 3 miles deep.
A 2.8 magnitude temblor occurred at 9:06 a.m. at Carmen, 9 miles south-southwest of Cherokee and 35 miles west-northwest of Enid. It was 6 miles deep.
After two other significant earthquakes were recorded in the state early Thursday, OCC spokesman Matt Skinner said the commission would be working on its response to those quakes, in the Crescent area, as well.
Late Thursday, OCC announced it would call for operators to stop operations at four disposal wells within 3 miles of the earthquake activity. Three are operated by Devon Energy and one by Stephens Energy.
OCC will announce volume reductions for other wells today.
A 4.0 magnitude temblor occurred at 8:24 a.m. at Marshall, 9 miles north of Crescent. It was 2 miles deep.
At 7:25 a.m., a 3.4 magnitude earthquake was recorded at Marshall, 7 miles north of Crescent and 27 miles southeast of Enid. It was less than a mile deep.
On Wednesday, a 3.0 magnitude quake was recorded at 9:34 p.m. at Douglas, 11 miles east of Waukomis and 13 miles east-southeast of Enid. It was 3 miles deep.
There have yet to be any reports of damage or injuries.
This year, 750 earthquakes magnitude 3.0 or greater, including 26 measuring magnitude 4.0 or greater, have been recorded in the state. In 2014, there were 585 quakes magnitude of 3.0 or greater, including 15 measuring magnitude 4.0 or greater.