Minn. lawmakers push for silica-sand mining study

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- The fight over silica-sand mining in southeastern Minnesota is moving to the state Capitol.

Republican state Rep. Tim Kelly of Red Wing says he will push for a more extensive review of the potential effect of silica-sand mining.

Kelly supports the idea of a statewide environmental impact statement and a temporary moratorium on sand mining while the study is completed.

The sand is used for "fracking," a process to fracture rock to release oil or gas. Several counties in southeastern Minnesota have passed temporary moratoriums on silica-sand mining as officials weigh the potential effects, including heavy truck traffic.

Republican state Rep. Steve Drazkowski of Mazeppa tells the Post-Bulletin of Rochester that local policymakers already are able to get the information they need from state agencies to make decisions.

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