New Energy Research Uses Machine Learning to Improve Earthquake Modelling and Prediction

Vancouver, BC – November 6, 2020 – New Geoscience BC energy research adds understanding to the relationship between hydraulic fracturing and induced seismicity in the Montney Formation in British Columbia’s Northeast Region.

A new study developed models and workflows to investigate various parameters believed to be related to induced seismicity (earthquakes caused by human activity). The Statistical Assessment of Operational Risks for Induced Seismicity from Hydraulic Fracturing in the Montney, Northeast BC report describes the sources of the data, the data preparation, and the workflow developed to generate models. Modelling details and associated databases are also being made available publicly for transparency, discussion and future investigation by other researchers.

“We used multivariate statistical methods and machine learning techniques to analyze public data from previous oil and gas well completion activities and seismic events,” said project lead and Enlighten Geoscience Ltd. President and Geomechanics Specialist Amy Fox. “Paired with information about the geology, we were able to identify some potentially influential factors that may help better understand the risk of earthquakes during natural gas development.”

The report concludes that no single factor was identified as being responsible for induced seismicity and that understanding induced events is highly dependent upon the specific datasets used and the features selected for use in statistical models. Various parameters are identified that appear to be important to the cause of seismicity or the event magnitude.

Geoscience BC has been creating new public data and information about the relationship between oil and gas well completions and induced seismicity in northeast BC since 2012.

This study is one of four projects launched by Geoscience BC in December 2019 guided by the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources 2019 Scientific Review of Hydraulic Fracturing in British Columbia report.

Geoscience BC Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer Carlos Salas said: “The Enlighten Geoscience team has developed a valuable methodology to further our understanding of induced seismicity. No doubt, with continued refinement, machine learning will aid industry in assessing induced seismicity risks during well planning, and help companies develop best practices to mitigate those risks.”

Accessing Information
View the project pages 2019-008 for more information.

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For more information, please contact:
Richard Truman
Geoscience BC

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