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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • A Wabasha, Minn., citizens group is appealing a conditional use permit for a frac-sand-loading facility, according to KAAL TV. The “Friends of Wabasha” filed the appeal with the City Planning Commission. The group opposes the granting of the permit to Superior Sand Systems last month. The permit allows Superior Sands to build a loading facility for transferring silica sand from trucks onto trains for transport to North Dakota and Texas for use in the oil and gas extraction process called hydraulic fracturing.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • A California development company with an Ashland, Ore., office hopes to mine sand on a 69-acre property in Coos Bay, Ore., and build a 500-unit housing development there when the mining is done, according to the Ashland Daily Tidings. That sand may be used for frac sand and construction sand as well. Ocean Grove Development Group LLC is seeking proposals from contractors to extract and sell sand. The company estimates that 3.5 to 4 million cu. yd. of sand could be removed from the site. Once the sand is removed, the company hopes to build 500 units of housing on the property, intended to serve people employed in an “industrial renaissance the company says it foresees in Coos Bay.”

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • The sudden emergence of west-central Wisconsin as prime territory for frac-sand mining is one reason Wisconsin Energy Corp. is planning to spend $150 million to $200 million for a new natural-gas distribution network in the region. The Milwaukee-based public utility company believes additional capacity is needed and is beginning to evaluate routes to serve communities between Eau Claire County and the city of Tomah in Monroe County, chief executive officer Gale Klappa told analysts, according to a media report.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • According to the Winona Daily News, Winona County, Wis., will re-publish Environmental Assessment Worksheet drafts for two proposed frac sand mines after staff discovered an error in the public comment process. In the drafts, the county said public comments on the reviews should be sent to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. County staff confirmed Tuesday that the county will accept the comments – the MPCA doesn’t handle them. The county plans to republish the review drafts with the correct information.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • The Sierra Club organized a protest at Starved Rock State Park in LaSalle County, Ill., to speak out against Mississippi Sand’s proposed 200-acre mining and processing plant just outside the park.

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