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10368 Columbus Circle, Bloomington MN 55420 February 26, 2013 Senator John Marty, Chair and Committee Members

Senate Environment & Energy Policy Committee Senator Marty and Committee Members: Today, February 26, 2013, your committee will begin hearings on Senate File 786. I am not able to attend in person but will be watching live from my office if it is on air, or will find the committee hearing archives after the fact if that is the only option I have. I believe there are many more citizens who will be doing the same. I am writing with HUGE concerns for the fast growing frac sand mining coming to Minnesota we are not prepared for this and need much stronger regulations at the state and local levels. I would like to see stronger measures included in SF786 The first of which is a Statewide moratorium on frac sand mining that covers the time needed for a comprehensive environmental review - 2 years generally is required to do this at the level that provides the best information, science, and public notification and involvement. This Moratorium should be immediate and cover the time the EQB really needs to complete a GEIS. The Second is direct language calling for a MPCA pollution permit. The language included in SF 786 that permits LGUs to extend interim ordinances or renew an expired ordinance prohibiting new or expanded silica sand mining, processing, or transfer facilities, does not apply to, or protect, LGUs which do not currently have ordinances in place. A statewide moratorium is required to accomplish this. LGUs require a statewide regulatory framework and enforcement as a minimum, in order to establish their individual policies. Our state regulations need to be strengthened to protect water resources and public health, as well as our natural resources, infrastructure and local communities quality of life and culture. I heard from the Mayor of Wabasha this morning - already the city of Wabasha has been impacted, this is a city known for its tourism and quaint small town flair. It is a hot spot for birders because of the great bird abundance along the river. This city is already seeing 600 large loaded trucks a day cutting through town, with the eminent threat of 300 more added to this 900 truck trips a day, impacting the city every hour. Wabasha has 650 tourism jobs and many more in health and other services. They do not need the destruction that is guaranteed to result from frac sand mining. This legislation must also provide sufficient agency funding and staffing for enforcement of regulatory frameworks that should be developed during the moratorium. I also have grave concerns for the proposed SOUTHEASTERN MINNESOTA SILICA SAND BOARD. If this board is set up anything like the IRRRB in northeast MN it will become a problem. The IRRRB

is now far too pro-mining - it finds the need to perpetuate itself so supports anything the industry wants to do, it misuses monies, it exempts industry from following environmental laws, it is more a mining advocate that standing up for the citizens and communities in northern MN. I foresee problems arising with this new board. At the very least it must include members of other counties where frac sand mining and/or processing occurs or is planned. It must also guarantee seats to NGOs, other economic interests (ie. farmers, tourism, local businesses and downtown shops, educators and teachers - in fact anyone with a stake in what this destructive new industry will bring to their communities). Last week your committee held joint hearings on silica sand (frac sand) mining in MN. You heard testimony from LGU officials, representatives of MNDOT, MPCA, DNR , MDH, and impacted citizens, the preponderance of whom argued for a moratorium on frac sand mining in MN, while an appropriate, statewide, scientific-based regulatory framework is assembled. You also heard testimony from pro-mining interests, including representatives from the Tiller Corp. and Preferred Sands. Neither of these companies have a stellar track record in frac sand mining. In June, 2012, the WI DNR referred actions against both of these companies to the WI DOJ. WI DNR charges against Tiller Corp. include: failure to maintain dikes and berm to control storm water allowing discharges of storm water without a permit failure to notify the DNR of facility expansions, production increases or process modifications that led to new discharges WI DNR charges against Preferred Sands include: failure to implement a required storm water pollution prevention plan failure to implement best management practices involving physical controls and surface water You can NOT "mitigate" the loss of the rare habitats and species. Goat prairies atop bluffs targeted for mining provide critical habitat for many rare plants, insects and animals. Golden Eagles have recently been found to frequent these bluff-top ecosystems during the winter. Raptors rely upon the thermals rising from these topographic features to ease their migrations. The Threatened Loggerheaded Shrike is found in the region. The Mississippi River Flyway is of global significance, with hundreds of millions of birds migrating along and utilizing the river and adjoining forest habitats twice annually. These habitats have been recognized as Important Bird Areas, as a result. What will we have left? flat, empty and ugly landscapes, erosion, and polluted river systems. One final note - I find it so depressing and devastating that here we are again pretending we must accept destruction of our lives and communities and environment for a few jobs and "economy". Frac mining will not only destroy the culture and beauty of southeast MN, but the product is used to destroy North Dakota (and elsewhere) grasslands and ecosystems, which is then creating a product that is destroying the very planet. This is suicidal for our species and the

planet. Burning carbon must come to an end - we should stop the destruction before it is too late. Request: We must have a moratorium spanning development of an appropriate regulatory framework, and the immediate history of two of the companies arguing for their ability to function without moratorium or additional regulation, should propel your committee to modify SF 786 to add a statewide moratorium to this proposed legislation. We must have direct language calling for a MPCA pollution permit. I commend the proposed legislation Sections 10, 11, and 12. I think that the existing draft legislation is necessary, but insufficient and needs much strengthening and amendment. Thank you for your attention. Respectfully, Lois Norrgard Bloomington resident, birder and concerned citizen in MN. 952-881-7282