Does Geothermal Energy Cause Earthquakes? Answered

Does geothermal energy cause earthquakes? There have been several inquiries into the rise of earthquakes in recent times. Researchers and scientists from different fields are trying to put their fingers on the actual cause. This has led to the emergence of several theories and concerns. One of the most asked questions regarding its occurrence is whether it is caused by geothermal energy.

What is geothermal energy?

With the growing concerns over conserving energy and saving it for future generations, the discussions about geothermal energy are getting stronger. It is one of the replenishable sources of energy that can cater to the use of human beings in several forms. Therefore, it can save energy and help give an unaffected power supply through green sources.

But do you know where this heat comes from and its origin point? If you do not, then you will find all the answers here. This energy is generated inside the earth and stored there for future use. Although it sounds like a feasible form of green energy supply, this particular system of generation and storage has created a stir regarding it being the very cause of earthquakes.

How is it produced?

The process of geothermal energy production is more straightforward than one may think. Very few simple steps go into capturing the energy for future use. All the steps have been enumerated here in more explicit terms for our readers:

  • The heat from the sun’s rays gets stored in the earth’s crust.
  • This aids in creating steam by utilizing the water underneath.
  • With the steam production, the turbine above starts spiraling or moving.
  • As this movement keeps on occurring, the turbine begins generating electricity.
  • As a result, it starts pushing water back into the ground.

What causes earthquakes?

As stated above, several causes of an earthquake have led to studies being continuously conducted to find the reason. However, a few known causes have been responsible for it. In reality, the sole basis for such a natural occurrence is releasing energy along a fault.

Rocks have a way of moving in two different ways. When they do so along the fault line, sometimes they get pressed and joined together. However, their usual path is in two different directions. This causes them to break away from the locked position and move incoherently. Such irregular movements give rise to a disrupted release of energy, which then moves in different directions.

Does geothermal energy cause earthquakes?

Some studies indicate that geothermal energy is a significant cause of earthquakes in many places. This is because the system of geothermal energy production requires water to be pushed into hot rocks. The sudden gush of water and the rise of steam causes an irregular energy that disrupts the whole pattern and leads to earthquakes.

Does drilling into the earth cause earthquakes?

Scientists are conflicted about drilling being the cause of earthquakes. They think that drilling for oil is done at the surface. It does not require deep intrusion. But when an earthquake occurs, it occurs at the deepest core. Although drilling can cause temporary quakes that last for a short time, it cannot lead to a full-blown earthquake.

Can we create man-made earthquakes?

Man-made earthquakes are not only a possibility but have become a significant concern. It is due to the constant exploitation of natural resources that such fears are rising. Instances such as drilling for oil, cutting down trees, exploiting land for research experiments or nuclear bomb testings, etc, have led to a spike in concerns over man-made earthquakes.


What is the largest earthquake ever recorded?

The largest earthquake documented and highly impacted was May 22, 1960. It was of 9.5 Magnitude, and it occurred in the southern parts of Chile.

Is earthquake man-made or natural?

Earthquakes are a natural phenomenon. They occur due to the disturbances in rock strata. However, in recent times, the rising exploitation of the earth and its resources has led to other natural disasters, such as earthquakes, making it a matter of concern for all environmentalists globally. 

How do the Japanese predict earthquakes?

The Japanese have a very technical and impactful way of measuring and predicting earthquakes. Their way is to examine the sea level. Further, they also look at the changes in the earth’s magnetic field. Their way has been a fascination for the rest of the world and has also been the subject of study for researchers all across the globe.

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