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The effect of imposed production measures on gas extraction induced seismic risk

  • Annemarie G. Muntendam-Bos (a1), Johannes P.A. Roest (a1) and Hans A. de Waal (a1)
Abstract

Shaking and damage in the province of Groningen, the Netherlands, resulting from production-induced seismicity has caused increased public anxiety. Since 2014, production offtake has been reduced stepwise by over 50% in an attempt to minimise production-induced seismicity. The earthquake catalogue, combined with comprehensive data of the changes in production offtake, shows a clear response of seismic activity following the production measures taken. Associated temporal variations in the proportionality between smaller- and larger-magnitude events (the b-value of the Gutenberg–Richter relation) are observed. Since production measures were imposed, the b-value has tended to increase, thus lowering the probability of a larger-magnitude event. The analysis also shows increases in activity rate and b-value prior to larger-magnitude events. Subsequently, the probability of a larger-magnitude event seems to be decreasing prior to the events occurring. This implies that for short-term earthquake prediction of hydrocarbon-production-induced seismicity, these types of analysis could be misleading. However, regional analysis is necessary to explain the observations in terms of rupture initiation. At present, each event felt still draws the interest of both public and press. As some clustering of events in both time and space is still observed, managing both the seismicity and the public perception provides a continuing challenge.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is unaltered and is properly cited. The written permission of Cambridge University Press must be obtained for commercial re-use or in order to create a derivative work.
Corresponding author
*Corresponding author. Email: a.g.muntendam-bos@minez.nl
References
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Netherlands Journal of Geosciences
  • ISSN: 0016-7746
  • EISSN: 1573-9708
  • URL: /core/journals/netherlands-journal-of-geosciences
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