Frac Sand Mining
In St. Paul Tuesday, Gov. Mark Dayton said he doesn’t have the legal authority to declare a moratorium on frac sand mining in southeastern Minnesota. This announcement comes after dozens of residents delivered a petition to his office asking for one. Both sides of the Mississippi River bluffs are home to a special kind of sand that’s used in frac mining for oil and gas.
Two Minnesota government agencies are in the early stages of developing new environmental rules governing the silica sand mining vital to hydraulic fracturing.
Hundreds of voices on both sides of the frac sand mining debate crammed into a state capitol hearing room. There were so many, in fact, that a second room was set aside to accommodate the overflow crowd of spectators.
An official with an oil exploration company that wanted to mine a special kind of sand in southeastern Minnesota expressed disappointment Wednesday about a vote by a county board for a one-year moratorium while it studies the potential environmental, health and financial impacts.