PAYNE COUNTY, Oklahoma - Payne County Legislator Rep. Cory Williams (D) called for a moratorium Monday on all saltwater disposal wells in the area identified by the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC) as a “seismic risk zone”.

Rep. Williams once to halt operation at wastewater injection wells in Payne, Pawnee, Kay, Noble, Grant, Logan and Oklahoma counties. The lawmaker’s comments come after a 5.0 earthquake caused significant damage in the town of Cushing.

In a statement released Monday, Williams noted, numerous scientific studies “have told us that what we’re doing in this state is extremely dangerous. We are willfully ignoring the evidence. The peer-reviewed research says that high-volume, high-pressure injection is causing these earthquakes.”

Williams also wants the OCC to ban the practice of bringing in wastewater from other states for injection here in Oklahoma.

“We are making Oklahoma a toxic dumping ground and risking our lives and property from induced seismicity,” Williams said.

Williams says he made this same suggestion four years ago and believes the state would not be experiencing these large quakes if officials had acted then.

The OCC reports it is working on an action plan for disposal wells near the Cushing quake epicenter. Those details are expected to be released soon.