These 6 states are the most at risk of a human-caused earthquake this year

Man Made Earthquakes Will Strike Oklahoma

Seismic activity is no longer dependent on natural causes. Human activity is playing a role as well.

The US Geological Survey recently mapped all the places that are most likely to be damaged by human-induced earthquakes in 2016. This is the first time the USGS has accounted for the quakes we are causing.Natural and induced quakesUSGS

For the most part, human-induced earthquakes are caused by the injection of wastewater deep beneath the Earth's surface. It typically comes from oil and gas mining sites. Fracking — or the process of using high-pressured water to release oil and natural from rocks — isn't causing most of the induced earthquakes, according to the USGS.

The states at the most risk for potentially disastrous human-induced quakes (from highest to lowest risk) are:

  1. Oklahoma
  2. Kansas
  3. Texas
  4. Colorado
  5. New Mexico
  6. Arkansas

Of that group, Oklahoma and Texas have the largest populations that would be directly affected by the induced earthquakes, the report said. Particularly, the risk for Dallas is ten times higher than it was in 2008, The Dallas Morning News reports.

Related: Learn more about active fault lines in the United States:

Active fault lines/zones in the United States -- earthquakes
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These 6 states are the most at risk of a human-caused earthquake this year

The Alaska-Aleutian Megathrust is located across 3,600 kilometers between Kamchatka, Russia to the Gulf of Alaska.

(Photo by Daniel A. Leifheit via Getty Images)

The Cascadia Megathrust stretches along the coasts of Washington and Oregon up into Canada

(Photo via Encyclopaedia Britannica/UIG via Getty Images)

The Eastern Tennessee Seismic Zone runs from Alabama to Virginia and is responsible for four earthquakes in the past century. 

(Photo by Harrison Shull via Getty Images)

The Elsinore Fault Zone lies along the Santa Ana Mountains in Southern California

(Photo handout via NASA)

The Hayward Fault Zone runs along San Francisco Bay for 119 miles.

(Photo by Dave and Les Jacobs via Getty Images)

The Humboldt Fault (red) and the Midcontinent Rift System (green) are both located in Kansas and Nebraska. 

(Photo via Public Domain)

The Laguna Salada Fault runs from the US to Mexico and caused the 2010 Mexicali quake.

(Photo credit should read Daniel CONEJO/AFP/Getty Images)

The Moab Fault is located in Utah.

(By Andrew Wilson (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons)

The New Madrid Fault Zone is located in Missouri.

(Photo via Public Domain)

The San Andreas Fault System runs along 1,300 kilometers in California. 


USA-EARTHQUAKE HISTORIC - Map of California visualizing earthquake activity over the past 25 years. Includes fault lines

The results came from reports of shaking and damage in those areas from the last five years, as well as self-reported data from people who felt shaking in their state.

The West Coast, which sits on a number of naturally-occurring quake fault lines, wasn't included in USGS' most recent study, since the majority of its quakes have natural causes. Here's how its 2016 quake risk compares to the rest of the country:


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