While the number of Wisconsin car-train accidents has remained relatively steady in recent years, and derailments actually are down, some residents who live near train tracks used for transporting sand, primarily in western and northwestern communities, complain about noise and traffic delays in addition to safety worries. Continue Reading →
Reporter Alison Dirr just finished a yearlong internship with us, during which she covered the sprawling beat of Wisconsin’s fast-growing frac sand industry. We talk about that in the latest podcast. And below the audio link, further reflections from Dirr. Also, we now have music for the podcast. Alison Dirr: After a year as WisconsinWatch’s frac sand beat reporter, I’m leaving with a real appreciation of the complexity and nuance of this controversy. Continue Reading →
Accessible sand can bring a windfall for some landowners. Others worry that proximity to sand mines is bringing down the value of their homes. And in some communities, a safety net of sorts is emerging. Continue Reading →
A legislative hearing Monday on a revised attempt to limit local governments’ authority to regulate nonmetallic mining, including existing frac sand mines, drew support from mining representatives but opposition from town leaders. Continue Reading →
Mining companies, Chippewa County and the University of Wisconsin-River Falls are teaming up on a $232,000, five-year study probing how the vast tracts of Wisconsin used for nonmetallic mining — including for frac sand — can best be reclaimed. Continue Reading →
Frac sand mining company Preferred Sands of Wisconsin has been ordered to pay $200,000 for stormwater and air permit violations at its facility near Blair, a Trempealeau County city. Continue Reading →
The mayor garnered a 43-vote margin Tuesday, while two city council members held onto razor-thin leads in Glenwood City recall elections sparked by controversy over a proposed frac sand mine. Continue Reading →
In this small city in northwestern Wisconsin, the mayor and two council members are facing recall elections over their handling of a proposed frac sand mine that would be built a half-mile south of a school.
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The impact of a controversial bill that would restrict local government regulation of frac sand mines might be broader than originally thought, affecting the proposed iron ore mine in northern Wisconsin and factory farms across the state, opponents said Thursday at a Capitol hearing. Continue Reading →
Wisconsin’s frac sand boom may have slowed, but the number of permitted and proposed facilities still has grown since the Center’s May tally. Continue Reading →
The draft bill, now being circulated for cosponsors, would bar local governments from regulating some aspects of nonmetallic mining, including its impacts on air quality, water, road use and reclamation.
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Like some other west-central Wisconsin residents, Frances and Dean Sayles are frustrated with the state Department of Natural Resources’ lack of a comprehensive approach to addressing concerns surrounding potential health problems from crystalline silica dust. Now some residents, academics, local government officials and even a frac sand producer have begun taking action. Continue Reading →
When I started reporting on the frac sand beat for my Center internship, I had no inkling that silica sand mining could have much of anything to do with my hometown of Minneapolis. Continue Reading →
Bookmark the Center’s frac sand project page to stay abreast of what’s happening in the industry. Continue Reading →
A new report says that the overall economic impact of frac sand mining will be minimal, and cautions communities to consider the potential costs of mining along with the benefits.
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