Superior Silica Sands LLC of Southlake, TX believes that a stop work order from the Trempealeau County, Wisconsin Department of Land Management with respect to Superiors future Independence, WI dry plant facility was issued by the county in error. The company is engaged in grading and excavating activities in the area with the intent to construct a dry plant to begin operations in 2015. The reported violations, says Superior, are attributable to a different operator mining in the area. Rick Shearer, Superiors president, said, While we are disappointed with the reports that reflect the misunderstanding with the Trempealeau County Department of Land Management, Emerge Energy is still executing our growth plan. Our Thompson Hills mine and wet plant began operations last month and is already processing wet sand for our winter stockpile so that we can continue to supply our customers. Our dry plant in Arland, WI remains on schedule to start production this quarter. Further, we remain hopeful that our dry plant at Independence will start operations as early as the first or second quarter of 2015. Industry fundamentals remain strong, and we have been able to sign additional multi-year contracts. We now have 8.2 million tons under contract annually, with weighted average remaining contract life of 4.2 years, which puts us well ahead of our contracting goals. Hi-Crush Partners LP of Houston, TX has announced an amendment to the long-term frac sand purchase agreement between Hi-Crush Operating LLC, a subsidiary, and Halliburton Energy Services. The amendment increases the annual minimum committed volumes through to the end of 2018. James M Whipkey, Hi-Crushs Co-CEO, said, Halliburton has been an important partner to Hi-Crush since the inception of our operations. We continue to broaden our relationship with Halliburton by increasing the volumes we sell to them. This most recent contract announcement brings our total aggregate contracted volumes in 2015 to 6.6 million tons. As previously announced, our sponsor has started the permitting process for development of a fourth Northern White frac sand production facility to meet the growing demand for our sand. In addition, we are adding expanded silo storage capacity at several of our distribution facilities to allow for even more efficient delivery of frac sand to our customers. La Ronge Gold Corp of Vancouver, BC has entered into a binding letter of agreement for an option to acquire a 100% undivided right, title and interest in an approximately 520-acre prospective frac sand property in northeast Arkansas. The company says that the property is underlain by the Ordovician St Peter sandstone formation. The formation is already host to several frac sand operations, including Unimin Corp, U.S. Silica, and Hi-Crush Partners.
Volume 28 issue 20