Geoscience BC

Geoscience BC

January 21, 2015 12:00 ET

Seismologist Hired to Study Induced Seismicity in Northeast B.C.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Jan. 21, 2015) - On behalf of the Induced Seismicity Monitoring Network Consortium ("the Consortium"), Geoscience BC is pleased to announce the hiring of Dr. Alireza Babaie Mahani as project seismologist for a two-year assignment. The Consortium is comprised of five project partners: Geoscience BC, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), the BC Oil & Gas Commission (BCOGC) and the Science and Community Environmental Knowledge Fund.

As part of his two-year contract with the Consortium, Dr. Mahani will work closely with other seismology experts from NRCan's Pacific Geoscience Centre and the BCOGC to monitor induced seismicity from natural gas development in northeast B.C. and study the relationship between fluid injection and potential large-magnitude seismic events.

Dr. Mahani is an engineering seismologist with experience in earthquake ground motion analysis from natural and man-made (induced) events and seismic hazard assessment. He has presented his work at conferences and published his research in journals including the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America. He received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. from Iran before moving to Canada in 2008 to pursue a Ph.D. program in geophysics at Western University, from which he graduated in 2013. Leading up to his commencement as seismologist with the Consortium, he held a post-doctoral position at the University of Calgary.

The Consortium was formed in late 2012 in response to recommendations set forth in the BCOGC report Investigation of Observed Seismicity in the Horn River Basin. In spring 2013, six state-of-the-art seismographs were installed in northeast B.C. to complement two existing Canadian National Seismic Network stations and better understand seismic activity created from natural gas operations; the consortium has a five-year mandate to collect and analyze the seismic data. In November 2014, the BCOGC and NRCan added two more seismographs to the network.

"The enhanced seismic network is providing publicly available information that also enables the energy sector and the regulator to continue the safe and responsible development of B.C.'s natural gas resources," said Carlos Salas, Geoscience BC's Vice President, Oil and Gas. "We are excited about the addition of Dr. Mahini to the project, as his expertise will strengthen our understanding of the causes of induced seismicity and allow the Consortium to make recommendations about how to mitigate the potential effects of resource operations."

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