Letter: Frac-sand mining will endanger health in Winona County
I support the proposed frac-sand ban in Winona County for all the reasons that have been enumerated in this discussion. Frac-sand activities endanger human health and safety. All fine particulate matter is carcinogenic, according to the World Health Organization as of 2013. This would include diesel exhaust and dust as well as sand.
The mining destroys a vital, sustainable resource in the form of the land and its beauty. Once it is raped, plundered, and pillaged for profit, it is gone for our forever. It can't be reclaimed.
The sand is vital to our drinking water supply because it filters the groundwater in our limestone geology. Without it, pollutants would remain and accumulate in it.
Our water supply is not infinite. Using it to process silica sand is detrimental and wasteful. Paul Douglas, meteorologist and founder of Accuweather, wrote that, "Many analysts believe clean (drinking) water, not oil, will be the most precious natural resource of the 21st century." We are not immune from a shortage.
The long term economic benefits of tourism and agriculture far outweigh the value of bluff destruction for profit gained for other parts of the country and world.
I recommend the commissioners pass the frac-sand ban for the welfare of all.
Dr. Frank Bures