Winemakers in some parts of California's Central Coast have long bragged about their soils, rich with decomposing shale. Now that same terroir also promises bountiful harvests for the energy industry, whose experts predict that the region's Monterey shale formation contains more than 15 billion barrels of reachable oil. But while traditional drilling operations have long existed alongside many Central Coast vineyards, the only way to extract oil from the shale is with hydraulic fracturing, which critics claim is an environmental hazard. Wine Spectator's Matt Kettmann investigates.
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