Expert challenges earthquake theory behind Indonesian mud volcano

Public release date: 31-Jul-2007

Contact: Professor Richard Davies
richard.davies@durham.ac.uk
44-191-334-2346
Durham University

Expert challenges earthquake theory behind Indonesian mud volcano

Expert challenges earthquake theory behind Indonesian mud volcano

A leading expert today repeated his assertion that an Indonesian mud volcano was almost certainly manmade despite a new study claiming the eruption might have been triggered by an earthquake.

Professor Richard Davies of Durham University�s Centre for Research into Earth Energy Systems (CeREES), said the volcano, known locally as Lusi, was most likely caused by the drilling of a nearby exploratory borehole (1) looking for gas.

He reiterated the findings of a Durham University-led study, first published in the February issue of US Journal GSA Today, following publication of a new paper led by the University of Oslo which said the eruption in May 2006 might have been caused by an earthquake that occurred two days earlier.

The Durham-led research discounted the effect of the earthquake as a cause of the eruption.

Professor Richard Davies, of Durham University�s Centre for Research into Earth Energy Systems (CeREES), said: �There were several problems with the exploration well prior to the eruption of the mud volcano, but it was when they started to pull the drill bit out of the hole that they probably sucked gas and water into the wellbore.

�We have calculated that a water or gas influx would have caused a critical increase in the pressure in the hole, sufficient to fracture the rock strata underground.

�It is very unlikely that the Yoyakarta earthquake had a significant role to play in the development of the mud volcano.

�We still maintain that the mud volcano was most likely triggered by operations during drilling. There is no need to evoke an earthquake trigger for this.�

Lusi first erupted on May 29 2006 in the Porong sub-district of Sidoarjo in Eastern Java, close to Indonesia�s second city of Surabaya.

The volcano has continued to spew out an estimated 150,000 cubic metres of mud every day and now covers an area of 10 square kilometres.

Around 20,000 to 30,000 people have lost their homes and factories have been destroyed. Thirteen people have also died as a result of a rupture in a natural gas pipeline that lay underneath one of the holding dams built to retain the mud.

###

(1) The borehole is owned by Indonesian oil and gas company Lapindo Brantas.

For queries call the media relations office at Durham University on 0191 334 6075 or email media.relations@durham.ac.uk.

Link to new paper referred to in press release:

Triggering and dynamic evolution of LUSI mud volcano, Indonesia, A Mazzini, H Svensen, et al
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleListURL&_method=list&_ArticleListID=604734140&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000009978&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=121711&md5=f05eeace40422f6b9530680180ea16f6

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4 Responses to Expert challenges earthquake theory behind Indonesian mud volcano

  1. kijan berkata:

    butuh artikel lumpur sidoarjo berbahasa inggris di mana ya??????

  2. ICALLEVI berkata:

    Ada yang punya dokumen pengeboran pada saat awal kejadian?? seperti Daily Report mungkin.
    Dokumen ini yang tidak diserahkan oleh LAPINDO untuk kepentingan penyidikan.
    Bagaimanapun HARUS ADA YANG BERTANGGUNG JAWAB TERHADAP DAMPAK YANG DITIMBULKAN!!! BAIK DAMPAK SOSIAL MAUPUN DAMPAK LINGKUNGAN.
    Pertanyaannya adalah : apakah berlebihan jika rakyat menuntut TANGGUNG JAWAB dari PEMERINTAH RI sebagai pengelola negara???
    Apakah berlebihan tuntutan warga mengenai ganti rugi yang dibayar tunai 100%???

  3. usil berkata:

    Mas Hati Nur, coba dong tengok postingan terdahulu. Sudah sejak lama
    RIrawan & Ompapang dkk mengatakan diblog ini, bahwa penyebab
    semburan akibat kecerobohan Lapindo.
    Malahan RIrawan secara spesific mengatakan bahwa : Mata bor telah
    menyentuh Batuan Cair (magma?) dan air menerobos masuk, maka
    terjadilah seperti proses pada PLTU.
    Hanya saja diatas itu Prof. Richard Davies sepertinya berbeda teori
    dengan RIrawan. Tidak ada keterangan rinci dari sang Prof, tapi
    sepertinya dia berasumsi tekanan dibawah sana STATIS.

    Ini hanya ‘rabaan’ usil lho? Kalo salah, nanti Ompapang dan mang Ipin
    serta pak Inyo yang akan betulkan, MERDEKA!!!

  4. hati nurani berkata:

    coba baca Indopos Rabu, 15 agustus 2007 hal 1 dan hal 7, pakar Geologi dari ITB, R Prajatna Koesoemadinata (RPK ), berkata “BANYAK GEOLOG yg mendapatkan proyek dari Lapindo, sehingga TIDAK MEMILIKI PENDAPAT YANG OBYEKTIF, PADAHAL ITU ADALAH JELAS-JELAS KESALAHAN PENGEBORAN”
    Saya bersyukur ternyata masih ada geolog yg punya nurani. Yg bahkan berseberangan dengan rekan almamaternya yg hanya berfikir mencari penyelesaian yang aman untuk kepentingan diri sendiri.

    Jadi kita ternyata lebih percaya dari geolog asing dulu. Malu saya katanya kita sudah MERDEKA ternyata masih belum MERDEKA dari kepentingan kepentingan (DUIT).
    Rakyat kecil yg bodoh selalu kalah dengan kita -para engineer yg katanya kaum intelektual, teknokrat, dll.

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