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This Week’s Market Buzz

• Recent oil price gains have eased after government data indicated that U.S. crude stocks have plunged more than expected as imports have declined and drillers pumped more product. Crude inventories fell by 7.6 million barrels in the last week, compared with analysts' expectations for a decrease of 2.9 million barrels. Brent crude, the global benchmark, was down 9 cents, or 1 percent, at $47.43 a barrel. U.S. crude gained 17 cents to $45.21.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

• The Coulee Frac Sand mine in the town of Alma, Wis., requested a conditional use permit at a recent Zoning and Land Information Committee meeting to expand its non-metallic mining operation, according to the Jackson County Chronicle. Coulee Frac is looking to dredge within 300 ft. of a shoreland zone near the east fork of Halls Creek, which requires a conditional use permit.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

• Arrows Up LLC, an affiliate of both OmniTRAX Inc., one of the largest privately held transportation-service companies in North America and The Broe Group, was issued U.S. Patent No. 9,650,216 titled “Bulk Material Shipping Container Unloader” on May 16, 2017. The patent covers the design, construction and usage of the Arrows Up Rack & Riser, which helps shippers of frac sand and other bulk commodities quickly and efficiently unload product into storage or transport receptacles. “Our intellectual property around the loading, transport and unloading of bulk materials positions Arrows Up as the leading solution provider for the frac sand and related industries. We can now help shippers and receivers manage their commodities with more precision, while reinforcing safety throughout the supply chain,” said John Allegretti, founder and CEO of Arrows Up.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

• The Jackson County, Wis., Board of Adjustment approved a variance request by Taylor Frac to allow for a second sand screener and storage structure to be built at its current facility near Taylor, Wis. According to the Jackson City Chronicle, the structure will stand to a height of 105 ft., which is higher than the maximum structure height of 45 ft. allowed by the Jackson County zoning ordinance. The new structure will be nearly identical to the current sand screener and storage structure that received its own zoning variance in 2012. The two buildings will be separated by 25 ft. and have a bridge that will connect the two for maintenance access. There will also be an additional wash sand pile that will be added to feed the drying structure.

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This Week’s Market Buzz

• According to the Winona Post, the Land Stewardship Project (LSP) made a move to join the legal battle over Winona County’s frac sand ban. Attorneys for LSP filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit challenging the county’s ban on mining sand for industrial purposes. If the motion is granted, LSP “will defend the lawsuit shoulder-to-shoulder with the county,” LSP attorney Ed Walsh stated. Potentially, LSP could also block the county from reaching a settlement that weakens or dismantles the ban, according to Walsh.

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