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The 23 August 2011 M 5.7 intraplate earthquake occurred in the Central Virginia seismic zone near Mineral, Virginia (USA), far from the nearest plate boundaries. I suggest here that this earthquake, as well as others occurring in this region since 1774, was triggered by pore-fluid pressure diffusion associated with groundwater recharge. Using finite element modeling (FEM) estimates are made of the magnitude and timing of pressure diffusion with respect to the time of the earthquake. Two scenarios are considered: (1) the diffusion took place along vertical to near-vertical diffusion paths, or (2) the diffusion was restricted to a hydraulically transmissive...

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