Rep. Richard Morrissette Holds Public Hearing On Oklahoma Earthquakes

Friday, January 15th 2016, 10:18 am
By: News 9

Representative Richard Morrissette is holding a public hearing Friday at the State Capitol, where experts will talk about what has been happening with Oklahoma earthquakes.

The hearing was going to take place on the 4th floor from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The public is invited. However, so many concerned residents from all the metro showed up for the hearing, they had to move it to the house chamber. is live-streaming the entire hearing.

According to Morrissette, half a dozen principal speakers are expected to make brief presentations and answer questions during a daylong public hearing on earthquakes and oilfield wastewater disposal wells.       

"This is an extremely timely and important hearing," said Morrissette. "I've received numerous telephone calls, emails and text messages from Oklahomans throughout this state who have expressed opinions about this subject."

Morrissette will chair the event, and state Rep. Cory Williams, D-Stillwater, will be vice chairman.

Tentatively, the principal speakers will include:

            § Todd Halihan, a hydrogeology professor at Oklahoma State University;

            § Scott Poynter, an Arkansas attorney who represents Oklahomans who have filed personal injury and property damage lawsuits against the industry for damages attributed to manmade earthquakes;

            § Petroleum geologist and former U.S. and international oil and gas operator Bob Jackman of Tulsa;

            § Johnson Bridgwater, director of the Oklahoma chapter of the Sierra Club;

            § Michael Root, a certified petroleum geologist and certified independent professional earth scientist who is CEO of TerraQuest Corp. in Edmond;

            § Former state legislator Jerry Ellis of Valliant, a newspaper publisher, will be unable to attend but has provided Morrissette with a few remarks about earthquakes, a subject he investigated before and after his legislative career concluded in 2014.

After those presentations, members of the audience will be provided an opportunity to express their views about the spate of earthquakes that have been rattling Oklahoma, particularly in the past three years. Each speaker from the audience will be limited to five minutes, Morrissette said.

Stay with us for updates.