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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • The city of Decorah, Iowa, has been asked to take a stand on frac sand mining, according to the Decorah Newspapers. Mayoral Candidate Jim McIntosh wrote, “People of Decorah look to the city administration to speak for and to focus our desires for the city we love. We therefore request that the mayor and the City Council employ its influence to convey our convictions to those who will be making the immense decisions that will affect our lives. We therefore ask that the city leadership consider and adopt the following resolution: ‘Given the potential damage to personal health, our traditional way of life and to the environment the people of Decorah have grown to cherish, we the mayor and city council of the city of Decorah stand with and support those opposing the institution of frac sand mining in Winneshiek County.’” McIntosh said although there would likely be “very little” frac-sand mining within the city of Decorah, it’s important the city’s position on the issue be known.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • Frac sand mining in Minnesota now has its own website. Six state agencies created a portal to their frac sand activities and rule-making around the industry. Officials said the site is geared toward easy navigation of the regulatory landscape. In particular, it will help people interested in what the state is doing to develop new rules for managing and permitting silica sand projects. The website, silicasand.mn.gov, provides links to each of the state agencies involved with making the new rules or managing activities involved with the mining, transportation and processing of silica sand. They include the Environmental Quality Board (EQB), the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Pollution Control Agency (PCA), Department of Health, Department of Transportation and Department of Agriculture.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • According to Post-Bulletin.com, the Goodhue County, Minn., Mining Study Committee voted to recommend that the county’s silica sand mining moratorium not be extended. The issue passed by a 7-2 vote. Goodhue County was the first Minnesota county to face organized citizen opposition in 2011 after Windsor Permian, an Oklahoma-based energy company, purchased 155 acres of land near Red Wing with the intent of creating the county’s first frac sand mine. The county adopted a one-year moratorium in Sept. 2011 to study health and environmental concerns related to the industry. When questions remained after intensive study, the county board voted to extend that moratorium for a second year.

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This Week's Market Buzz

  • Victory Nickel Inc. hired D. Brent Lock as vice president, marketing. Lock brings extensive marketing experience to Victory Silica. He has spent the past five years as vice president operations/marketing and general manager with Canfrac Sands Ltd., a Calgary-based frac sand producer with operations located near Lloydminster, Sask. Lock will be responsible for developing and implementing marketing strategies and managing customer relationships in support of Victory Silica's goals to begin frac sand sales in 2013 and to become a leading supplier of high-quality frac sand products in Canada.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

  • Frac Resources, a Houston-based frac sand logistics and distribution company, has partnered with La Porte, Texas-based Frontier Logistics LP to construct a new rail park on 550 acres of land in the Permian Basin. The newly planned $10 million rail park is located about 30 miles east of Midland, Texas ­– an area where the company said there is a need for more rail service.

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