Skip to comments.Sand trains stir up dust in St. Paul neighborhood [Minnesotans afraid of sand]
Posted on 06/26/2012 10:24:27 PM PDT by Hunton Peck
Residents are uneasy over potential health risks posed by silica.
Open train cars filled with sand have raised alarm in St. Paul's St. Anthony Park neighborhood, where some residents wonder if the silica that comprises 80 percent of the unprocessed sand is safe.
The cars, which often are parked in a rail yard sandwiched between homes and an industrial zone, are appearing on a more regular basis since an oil boom has increased the demand for the sand for its hydrofracking operations.
BNSF Railway Co., which transports the sand, and Minnesota Commercial Railway representatives said the trains are carrying wet "unprocessed raw sand" -- not pure frac sand -- and that it isn't a health risk. The concern, however, is that nearly all information about silica's health impact are derived from studies in the workplace, where it has been shown to cause cancer, and not of ambient exposure.
"We know it's [silica] not good for you," said Hillary Carpentar, a toxicologist with the Minnesota Department of Health. "It's a classic occupational toxin. I think the concern is that we just don't know" about casual exposure.
Hydrofracking has grown in recent years, spurring a frac sand gold rush in the Upper Midwest. Southeastern Minnesota and Wisconsin have become ideological and environmental battlegrounds....
Though railroad officials insist there is no health hazard, they, along with representatives of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency will meet with residents Wednesday night.
It's little comfort for people such as Jim Tittle, a St. Paul resident who shops in St. Anthony Park.
"The point isn't that we are certain that the dust will make people sick at this level of exposure," said Tittle, an activist who is making a documentary on the industry.
(Excerpt) Read more at startribune.com ...
Anything to make America impoverished and energy-free.
Oh, and did I mention these people are nuts? Specifically, they're eremikophobes.
WE MUST EVACUATE THE ENTIRE STATE OF FLORIDA IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!!!
And the Red Star Tribune is only too willing to assist in creating some sort of hysteria. It really grinds against the leftists that the Dakotas are providing a nice stream of American oil, and there are very few wing nuts locally to provide roadblocks.
The title should be “Jim Tittle, a St. Paul activist and filmmaker complains about sand in rail cars.”
Oh, Horrors! The beaches are gonna cause us to get cancer! Where is BO and his Homeland Security bunch when you need them?
And to imagine we buy sand for our children to play in!
We must band sand!.....For the children!!!!!!!!!!!
Even California allows sand.
Considering the lengths the environuts are going to in their attempts to restrict carbon dioxide emissions, banning sand doesn’t seem far-fetched at all. They can talk each other into believing anything.
A case could be made for just about anything being bad for humans. Drink too much water at one time and it will kill you!........
Second-hand sand exposure alert!
Ah, the dangers of dihydrogen oxide. Information long suppressed by Big Water...
WTH are they smoking up there?
I thought Charles Atlas found the cure for that decades ago!
Massachusetts and Cali both have their varieties of nut, but there’s a peculiar strain of liberal lunacy native to the Upper Midwest that’s not quite like anywhere else’s. I think it has something to do with the large number of Scandinavians.
I couldn’t make it through more than a few of the comments before developing an urge to bang my head against a wall.
Doesn’t silica turn to glass when exposed to that much hotness?
It has to be the lutefisk, what else would account for so many lye-ers?
That’s base, man...
Silicosis is no laughing matter. Sandblasters, miners and such can really suffer from it if they don’t diligently use a good respirator around airborne rock dust. Sand passing by in a rail car seems unlikely to offer the same risk but I would not dismiss it out of hand.
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