Frac Sand Mining in Western Wisconsin Elicits Strong Local Reaction

Sep 24, 2012

Gold rush mentality seems to reign as entrepreneurs race to mine silica sand - an essential element of  fracking.

Superior Silica Sands mine occupies 135 acres in the Town of Auburn in Eau Claire County. Trucks carry the sand northeast to New Auburn where it is dried before being sent out by rail.

Clusters of protests popped up in and outside the U.S. this weekend as people demonstrated concern about "fracking". It’s the process used to remove natural gas from the earth. Sand of just the right size and strength is critical to the fracking process and LOTS of it is found in western Wisconsin.

WUWM Environmental Reporter Susan Bence spent time in the region last week and will be reporting on what she saw and heard. She joined Ann-Elise Henzl on Morning Edition to offer a preview.