At the Minnesota State Fair on Wednesday, Governor Mark Dayton said he supports a ban on frac sand mining and processing in southeast Minnesota and is willing to try to pass such a ban during the next Legislative session. He also said that the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and Department of Natural Resources will vigilantly enforce newly passed laws.
At Minnesota Public Radio's fair booth for an on-air discussion with fair goers and callers, the Governor said: “The fracking frankly I would keep out of Minnesota entirely. I wanted to ban further silica sand mining and any processing of that in southeast Minnesota. I would allow the existing operations that are more in the Mankato area and Minnesota River and a little bit north of the Twin Cities.
These areas are not so ecologically fragile. But I couldn’t get the Legislature to go along with the ban in southeastern Minnesota. But we did get some very, very tight regulations, very tight restrictions, that the DNR and Pollution Control Agency are going to enforce vigilantly and we’ll see how it goes. But I’m prepared to try again next year to get the Legislature to say that area is off limits."
Thank the Governor for this clear statement that puts the health and well-being of Minnesota before frac sand company profits.
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“Governor Dayton, I was impressed to hear you say at the State Fair that frac sand mining and processing should be banned in southeast Minnesota and that you are willing to push the issue at the Legislature next year. I urge you to make this a priority. We must protect this ecologically sensitive area of the state. You also said the DNR and Pollution Control Agency will vigilantly enforce the standards for frac sand facilities that were passed last session. This is important because some frac sand mines are already in operation and neighbors to these facilities need their air and water protected now.”
• What’s next?The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is in the process of creating rules to protect air and water from frac sand facilities. Look for an action alert in the next week from LSP on how you can help ensure these rules protect our air and water from frac sand pollution.
• You can also read a Star Tribune editorial about the importance of aggressive implementation of the frac sand restrictions that were passed: Minnesota must keep a close eye on sand mining
• Read LSP member Kelley Stanage’s blog on LSP’s website: Gov. Mark Dayton States Support for a SE MN Frac Sand Ban
• For more information on LSP's work related to this issue, contact Bobby King at 612-722-6377 or email@example.com.