Big money in fracking California

Fracking Monterey Formation could generate billions for state economy

Development of central California’s oil-rich Monterey shale formation through hydraulic fracturing could boost the state’s economy by 14 percent, a study finds.

The University of Southern California study concluded that tapping the 1,750-square-mile formation would create hundreds of thousands of jobs and generate $4.5 billion in 2015 and $24.6 billion by 2020 in tax revenue, according to the Los Angeles Times. The U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates the formation contains 15 billion barrels of oil, or 64 percent of the country’s deep-rock oil deposits.

However, the oil can be extracted only through fracking, which involves injecting water laced with hundreds of chemicals and sand into rock formations at high pressure. Environmentalists warn of the possibility of drinking-water contamination and unnatural seismic activity.