A group of environmentalists from the Hollow Water First Nation who call themselves “What the Frack” are demanding answers as to how a silica sand project, run by Canadian Premier Sand, was approved.
The group was at the Manitoba legislature chasing down the minister of Sustainable Development.
They want to know if a work permit was granted to Canadian Premier Sand to begin construction.
“We’ve never received a straight answer,” said Don Sullivan. “it’s either yes, or no we haven’t.”
Canadian Premium Sand is spearheading a project called Winipigow Sand.
The company is in discussions with chief and council about plans to build an industrial plant to extract silica sand from Hollow Water and nearby communities of Seymourville, and Manigotagan.
“I live there, this is my home,” said Hollow Water members Reg Simard. “I don’t want my home be… to be bulldozed.”
Simard said the proposed mine is five to six kilometres from his house and he has concerns about the company’s proposal.
“They come in and tell us all the great things about this,” he said. “All the positives, now granted there is a lot of positives uh – to the project but at what cost?”
His main concern is about the air quality around the area once the project is approved.
APTN News requested an interview with the Rochelle Squires, the minister of Sustainable Development.
Her office said she was not available but in an email statement, the minister said that, “The company has submitted an Environmental act proposal which the province is currently reviewing. Crown-Indigenous consultation has begun.
“Environmental safety, including health and safety, is a component of the company’s Environment Act proposal, which is currently under review.”