— June 29, 2022
New Mexico Bureau of Geology & Mineral Resources seismologist, Mairi Litherland, was interviewed by Curtis Segarra from KRQE for a story about earthquakes in New Mexico. Dr. Litherland manages the New Mexico Tech Seismic Observatory. In the article, she explains how most of the earthquakes in NM are associated with extension along the Rio Grande rift. However, there has been a substantial increase in seismicity in southeast NM that is related to petroleum extraction. In particular, the disposal of of produced water via injection into deep wells has induced many earthquakes in the region.
For more information about induced seismicity, see Dr. Litherland's article: "Induced Seismicity in New Mexico" in New Mexico Earth Matters.