Public broadcaster KERA and StateImpact Texas, a public radio collaborative, will sponsor a public meeting in Azle on June 18 to address the string of small earthquakes that shook northern Parker County starting in November last year. Scheduled panelists include Weatherford State Rep. Phil King, Reno Mayor Lynda Stokes, SMU geophysics professor Heather DeShon and StateImpact Texas reporter Mose Buchele. KERA's Doualy Xaykaothao, who has covered major earthquakes in Japan, Indonesia and Thailand, will moderate the discussion and another StateImpact Texas reporter, Terrence Henry, will moderate audience questions.
It's the third public meeting this year on the quakes around Azle and Reno. The Texas Railroad Commission held a meeting Jan. 2 to hear reports from citizens, and the following week a group of drilling critics held its own event. The Railroad Commission, which regulates the oil and gas industry in the state, hired a seismologist in March and heard residents at a Jan. 21 meeting its Austin offices that drew about 30 residents. A special Texas house subcommittee also held a hearing May 12 in which it heard from researchers and state regulators.
Officials in Arkansas, Ohio and Colorado have linked earthquakes with nearby wastewater injection wells, while Texas and Oklahoma regulators have not established such a link. University of Texas at Austin researchers have also concluded that there were possible links between injection wells and seismic activity at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, around Cleburne in 2009-2010.
The June 18 meeting is set for 7 p.m. at the Azle High School auditorium, 1200 Boyd Road in Azle. It is free and open to the public.
-- Jim Fuquay