Investigators have said that the earthquake in the south eastern Spanish city of Lorca last year was probably caused by groundwater extraction.
Using satellite images the scientists found the quake was triggered by the rupture of a fault that had been weakened by groundwater extraction.
The investigation was led by Canada’s University of Western Ontario research fellow Pablo Gonzalez and produced the result were published in scientific journal Nature.
The magnitude 5.2 earthquake struck the city of Lorca on 11 May 2011 killing 10 people.
Researchers said the report showed how human activity can influence “how and when earthquakes occur”.