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Emerge Energy Services Files Chapter 11

Emerge Energy Services, which owns eight frac sand mining and processing facilities in Wisconsin under subsidiary Superior Silica Sands, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protections in federal court, according to Wisconsin Public Radio.

Now, officials in Chippewa and Barron counties are working to find out how the bankruptcy might impact plans to reclaim idled sand mines.

Emerge Energy filed for bankruptcy, though court documents show one mine and two processing facilities are still in operation. The filings list more than $338 million in debt from creditors around the country including construction, excavating and contracting companies in Wisconsin. Emerge Energy listed a roughly $6.2 million debt owed to Market & Johnson Inc., which is based in Eau Claire, Wis.

The frac sand mining company was already in financial trouble. In May, Emerge Energy announced it was entering into a debt restructuring agreement with its lenders outside of court but said bankruptcy was a possibility if talks broke down.

In October 2018, Emerge Energy CEO Rick Shearer said the company was laying off 20 employees at its Wisconsin operations mainly due to the influx of sand from Texas.