Letter: Commissioners better stop silica sandEvery day the threat of frac sand mining in Goodhue County grows despite citizen outcry for banishment.
By: Michelle Meyer, The Republican Eagle
To the Editor:
Every day the threat of frac sand mining in Goodhue County grows despite citizen outcry for banishment.
Recently I passed a new mine in Wisconsin. It sits across the street from several homes.
Look out your window. Imagine your neighbor is a crater the size of six football fields. Imagine that crater as a 24-hour-a-day industrial operation.
That’s what I saw. A once pastoral countryside turned into a desolate moonscape.
In West Virginia, the mountain top removal tactics of Massey Energy are so untouchable that despite lawsuits, protests and multiple deaths of coal miners due to unsafe conditions, they brazenly built a coal silo just 300 feet from an elementary school. To top it off, the school sits downhill from one of their slurry impoundments. Children go home daily, complaining of headaches and stomachaches.
No one would wish this for her own child. But according to energy lobbyists, mountains and poor children are dispensable because there’s gold in them there hills.
Locally, several of our county commissioners are handshaking their way toward so-called sound business decisions with gold-diggers who are flying into our airport. Each hollow suit that steps onto our soil comes here with the intention to line his pockets by destroying a landscape and a life with thousands of years of history.
And our commissioners are spit-shining their shoes. If they don’t see the light soon, all the obliteration happening in neighboring counties will be coming to a bluff near all of us.
Energy industries bring in billions of dollars by killing our water, our land, our lungs, our landscape and our future. It’s not cheap. It’s not moral. It’s not secure. It’s a showcase of political cowardice along both sides of a narrowing aisle.
This is a war, and some commissioners are sipping champagne with the enemy. Either these five better rally their collective testosterone to stop frac sand mining before it starts or we will all literally face a fight for our lives. Ask West Virginia. Ask Wisconsin.