Letter: Environmental impact study needed for frac minesAn environmental impact study should be demanded by county commissioners before allowing any silica frac sand mining in Goodhue County or within any counties along the Mississippi River Valley.
By: Jim McIlrath, The Republican Eagle
To the Editor:
An environmental impact study should be demanded by county commissioners before allowing any silica frac sand mining in Goodhue County or within any counties along the Mississippi River Valley.
County Officials are elected to protect the health, welfare and safety of the citizens, not to grease the wheels of large conglomerate energy concerns. Consider the upcoming elections of commissioners. Do not re-elect any commissioner who does not demand a complete environmental impact study on our behalf.
Also, public input to the Goodhue County Mining Ordinance Article 14 must be incorporated into the ordinance and not ignored or lightly regarded as it provides significantly more protections. No changes or exceptions should be allowed in Article 12, Bluff Protection, as it will allow strip or contour mining in the bluff areas even if they are out of sight.
We are facing devastation by sand-hungry companies that have no regard for the countryside or its citizens.
Consider the mining company in Wisconsin that dumped five days of wastewater and silt into the St. Croix River, due to the mining company not building the holding pond to specifications. The leak was not discovered until a hiker noticed it and the damage was done.
Another breach occurred at a Wisconsin holding pond sending a tidal wave of water and sludge into a farmer’s yard, barn and home.
When you hear the phrase “we want to be good neighbors,” put your antenna up.
Jim McIlrath is a Florence Township Board supervisor.