MAIDEN ROCK, Wis., Dec. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Wisconsin Industrial Sand Company, a Fairmount Minerals company, has reduced its freshwater consumption by more than 50% during the last three years at all of its mines, which are located in Maiden Rock, Bay City, and Menomonie. The mines are recapturing, recycling, and reusing nearly all of the process water following significant capital investment in new technology.
In Pierce County, the Maiden Rock underground mine and Bay City underground mine have each reduced the amount of freshwater per ton of sand produced by 60% since 2010. The Menomonie mine in Dunn County has reduced the amount of freshwater per ton of sand produced by 54.5% since 2009.
The Maiden Rock mine is using only 42% of the average amount of water allowed under its high-capacity well permit issued by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. The Bay City mine is using only 17% of its permitted amount; the Menomonie mine is using just 15%.
"We are producing a cleaner sand product while at the same time greatly reducing the amount of water we use from local aquifers," said Aaron Scott, Menomonie plant manager. "This is part of our continuing commitment to sustainable development."
Sand mining process water washes clay, shale, and other debris from the sand so it can be processed and sized for sale. New thickener tanks at the Menomonie and Bay City mines draw the silt and clay from the wash water so the water can be recycled and reused.
At the Maiden Rock mine, a new, more efficient wash plant also recycles water, in addition to having drain tiles under washed sand stockpiles so water can be recaptured as the sand dries.
Wisconsin Industrial Sand Company is also decreasing its environmental footprint with a solar energy panel that powers the Menomonie mine's offices, laboratory, and maintenance shop. A new sand dryer at the Maiden Rock mine runs on cleaner-burning natural gas instead of propane.
About Fairmount Minerals
Fairmount Minerals is one of the United States' largest producers of industrial sand. The Chardon, Ohio-based company operates a global network of 23 mining, mineral processing, manufacturing, and coating facilities with six administrative and R&D offices.
Fairmount Minerals' specialized sands advance a vast array of industries and markets, such as construction, filtration, foundry, glass, sports turf, and oil and gas. The company's more than 750 employees bring its sustainability motto of 'Do Good. Do Well.' to life and embrace its sustainable development (SD) mission of People, Planet, and Prosperity. For more information, please visit: www.fairmountminerals.com.
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SOURCE Fairmount Minerals