Silica Mining Expansion in Wisconsin
Mining has been part of Wisconsin’s history and economy, both for good and for ill. Most of us are familiar with the many sand and gravel pits that dot our state. For the most part, we have not found them intrusive or worrisome. We understand that sand is an important resource used in many of the products that benefit our lives. Like all resources it is precious and finite and we should be thoughtful and careful about all decisions related to its extraction and use.
We welcome Development, but must guard against Exploitation
This new large scale mining of our Silica Sand for the oil companies is of a depth and size we are not accustomed to. Think: Mountain Top Removal. Where sand and gravel pits might operate seasonally, a few weeks at a time, these huge sand mines will be in operation all year long. They will be over 100 feet deep compared to sand pits that are typically 20 -30 feet deep. They will require the removal of many more acres of our valuable topsoil and trees and disrupt the wildlife we treasure. This type of mining will remove one hill after another, flattening our landscape. It is not clear if the land can be returned to productive agricultural uses. Year round transporting of these huge quantities of sand plus processing it in Chippewa Falls will use huge amounts of fuel and energy. The full cost to us is not even known, either environmentally or economically. Have you seen a reliable Cost/Benefit Analysis?
This new mining of our sand is not being done by local businesses for local use. It is for the oil and gas industries to use for “fracturing” oil and gas wells. Chemicals the Oil Industry refuses to reveal will be added to our sand. Then it will be forced into wells in attempts to remove dwindling supplies of oil and gas. This “mine fracturing” is increasingly suspected of causing contamination to our nation’s water supplies and in fact could be banned entirely in the near future. Do we really want to give up the land, water and air quality we already have for an industry that could soon be illegal ? For an industry that is contributing in large ways to many of the environmental crisis we are facing? The Oil and Mining companies will save large amounts of money by mining our easy to reach sand. Do we have guarantees that the sacrifices we make will be repaid with lower priced supplies of natural gas for our use? In fact, it is quite possible that start to finish, this whole process will use more energy than we will ever get out of it. Furthermore, there is nothing about this invasion of mining and heavy industry that fits with a sustainable, safer and healthier tomorrow for us and our children.
We know Canadian Sand and Proppants is trying to mine near Cook’s Valley here in Chippewa County. We also know they will need many more mines to keep feeding their Sand Processing Plant in Chippewa Falls. We are concerned because the EPA gives the Mining industry many exemptions -“free passes” – when it comes to regulations meant to protect our health and environment.
Please explore other areas of this website to learn more about our specific concerns for the city of Chippewa Falls. However, since we are also citizens of Chippewa County and Wisconsin we invite you to check out how many other Wisconsin locations are fighting against and being targeted for more mining. Pay special attention to the secrecy these “unknown” mining companies use to enter our communities. They don’t reveal who they are or what their connections are. Note how they don’t always keep their word. And they wonder why we don’t blindly trust them?
Randall township, Kenosha County, WI
2004, website put up to oppose mining proposed by Thelen Bros. Sand and Gravel
Website full of helpful information, and photos
Have not determined if mine went in or not
Town of Howard – Canadian Sand & Proppants, Inc wants to mine here
This website is very informative – Please take time to learn what your neighbors are up against
Menomonie, WI – Hoffmann Hills location
Proppant Specialists was name of Mining company, Ron Jordan was company representative
Community fought and won, keeping the mine out, but………
A Mine and Plant went in at another Menomonie location, under different company name
Already, citizens are having complaints about:
road damage from trucks
mining company attempting to back out of earlier promises
Too much light coming from sand processing plant
Vibration from the blasting
“Although Fairmount Minerals asked, its wish to eliminate a condition from its special exception permit was turned down. ……Glenn Stoddard of Eau Claire urged the BOA to deny Fairmount’s request. He warned the board, ‘This is a slippery slope. They might come back and ask for the removal of other conditions. … If the condition is removed, you will have no control whatsoever, no limit on how many trucks leave the mine‘ ”
Just announced. No evidence of community awareness or resistance
Please note the article, like most articles, presents only the positive aspects of mining
Above 3 articles all about attempts to get silica sand mine in Town of Arland
Rischette said the people who met with the Arland Town Board said they represented mining investors but did not say which companies they represented, nor did they leave business cards.
Texas mining company buys land near Ottawa ( Illinois ) , 03/26/2008
These companies are just changing their name to hide true connections.
“A Texas company recently bought land a few miles west of Ottawa. CHT Farms, of Abilene, Texas, bought almost 80 acres ……. U.S. Silica has leased the land.
The Times made a telephone call Monday to Ronald W. Jones, of CHT Farms….Jones said they have no plans “for now.” He also declined to discuss the nature of his company’s business.
However, the phone number for CHT Farms also is the number for Proppant Specialists of Brady, Texas.Proppant Specialists. In December (2007), zoning officials rejected the company’s application to start a sand mining operation near a state recreation area in Dunn County, Wis. “