The Sierra Club and Public Justice joined together and launched a lawsuit against three energy corporations, alleging they were at fault for causing earthquakes in Oklahoma.
Devon Energy Corp., Chesapeake Energy Corp. and New Dominion had used hydraulic fracking to drill for oil, which the green groups said caused a 5.1 magnitude quake over the weekend, as well as several smaller ones in previous months.
So now the environmentalists want the companies held liable for the property damage, the Hill reported.
“The science laid out in our case is clear,” said Paul Bland, the executive director of Public Justice, in a statement. “Oklahoma may be on the verge of experiencing a strong and potentially catastrophic earthquake. This lawsuit, which we filed after the three companies named in our suit refused to take steps of their own, is an action brought by residents of Oklahoma in an attempt to protect their property, their communities and their lives.”
And Johnson Bridwater, director of Sierra Club’s Oklahoma chapter, said in a statement reported by the Hill: “Oklahomans, just as all Americans do, deserve the right to live in peace and comfort, not to live in fear of man-made earthquakes. It is our hope that these three companies will recognize the immediate danger they are putting communities in and put our health and our environment ahead of its profits.”
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Oklahoma authorities concluded in a report released in 2015 that wastewater injections conducted by the energy companies were causing the earthquakes.
The three companies named in the suit didn’t provide comment to the Hill.