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Winona Moratorium Ends

Two Winona, Wisc., City Council members made a last-ditch effort to extend the city’s frac sand moratorium but were denied by the rest of the council, according to a report in the Winona Daily News. The council voted 5-2 not to extend the city’s yearlong moratorium on new and expanding frac sand businesses by 120 days. The moratorium will expire March 13.

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Wabasha Moratorium Begins

The Wabasha, Wis., City Council approved its first frac sand moratorium, which halts all new or expanding operations, according to Finance and Commerce. The council also approved a second moratorium, which halts companies with significant truck traffic from expanding to more than 500 regular trips a day or more than 30 heavy trips.

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Frac Sand Operations Cited in Wisconsin

Nearly a fifth of Wisconsin’s 70 active frac sand mines and processing plants were reportedly cited for environmental violations last year, as the industry continued to expand at a rapid clip, according to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR).

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Environmental Studies Underway in Wisconsin

Competing studies are under way to assess air pollution from Wisconsin’s frac sand industry and examine the impact of frac sand mines on water, according to the LaCrosse Tribune.

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Frac Sand Brouhaha in Minnesota

KARE TV in Minnesota is reporting that the state House Energy Policy Committee and the Senate Environment and Energy Committee heard testimony on frac sand mining from an overflow group of citizens asking for further regulation and time to study the issue; and from industry advocates speaking in support of the practice and the jobs it creates. They asked lawmakers to impose new permitting standards on frac sand mining operations, to protect water and air quality and to help cities handle the heavy truck traffic connected with them.

Read more: Frac Sand Brouhaha in Minnesota