Groningen hit by another earthquake, minister visits locals

Northern parts of Groningen were hit by another earthquake on Tuesday night causing some minor damage to buildings.

The earthquake measured 3.0 on the Richter scale, local broadcaster RTV Noord reported. This means it is officially considered to be a more severe quake.

The epicenter was close to the town of Loppersum, which economic affairs minister Henk Kamp is due to visit later on Wednesday.


The quakes are being caused by the ground settling following the extraction of large fields of natural gas. After a string of quakes in February there were calls for natural gas extraction in the area to be scaled back.

Kamp is visiting the province for a fact-finding mission following fears quakes in the region are getting stronger. An economic affairs ministry report in January said gas extraction may cause earthquakes of between 4 and 5 on the Richter scale, not up to 3.9 as earlier thought.

Three investigations into the direct of cause of the quakes and their impact on locals are currently underway. Many people are concerned about the effect on the value of their property.

Gas extraction company NAM has said it will take steps to prevent damage to vulnerable buildings and is looking at ways to extract gas with less far-reaching effects. It describes the risks as ‘acceptable and manageable’.

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