Silica Sand Mining, Processing and Transportation in Minnesota

The 2013 Minnesota Legislature passed and Governor Mark Dayton signed new legislation to address silica sand mining, processing and transportation operations in Minnesota. The legislation directs state agencies to provide local units of government with technical assistance on regulation and permitting. In addition, the legislation sets new thresholds for environmental review of silica-sand-related operations and requires development of a number of new regulations. Several state agencies will be involved in implementing this legislation. This web site will highlight each agency’s progress; follow links below.

The rulemaking process

The legislation directs the Department of Natural Resources, Pollution Control Agency, and Environmental Quality Board to develop new state rules on silica sand (often called "frac sand" or "frack sand"). Rulemaking in Minnesota follows procedures outlined in the Minnesota Administrative Procedures Act (Minn. Stat., Ch. 14).

Mechanisms for soliciting public input on new rules are outlined in the APA; significant opportunities for public participation in silica sand rulemaking will be noticed on this page. Interested parties also may sign up with the individual agencies to be notified of significant developments. The agencies have various timelines for their rulemaking; for updates, check this page or visit the agency links above. A new rule generally takes between one and two years to develop.

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