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Utah Frac Sand Mine Moves Forward

A frac sand mine proposed in southwest Utah is poised to move forward after the Kanab City Council conditionally agreed to sell water to the Salt Lake City-based company pushing the project forward following a contentious public hearing, according to KUER 90.1.

A second hearing before the Kane County Planning Commission was expected to approve the project’s conditional use permit. The permit will outline the measures the mine must take to mitigate potential negative impacts of the mine.

The conditional approval hinges on the Kanab city attorney’s review of potential liability if problems arise from the project, which would mine and process sand across a 55-acre area roughly 10 miles north of the city.

Dozens of residents attended the four-hour hearing and expressed concerns that city officials had not gathered sufficient information about how the project would affect the town’s water supply or alter the area’s landscapes.

The operation is being proposed by Southern Red Sands LLC, a start-up mining company based in Salt Lake City. The company owns more than 500 other mining claims across 12,000 acres near the proposed site.

Southern Red Sands officials estimate that the project would create as many as 40 jobs, though some will be shift work and technical positions. Trucking will be outsourced. The company has already leased the potential mine site – a 640-acre property south of Highway 89, which includes a feature known as “Red Knoll.” The land is currently managed by the School and Institutional Trust Land Administration, or SITLA, a state trust that uses public lands to generate revenue for public schools.