Earlville, Illinois residents are divided over a proposed shipping center in their community that would house silica sand, a key component of the fracking process. The slow-moving project to create the 230-acre facility has drawn concerns from residents of the northern Illinois city who say the transport center could pose a risk to public health.
Proponents of the facility, being proposed by the Texas-based oil and gas company EOG Resources Inc., argue it will be economic boon for the small LaSalle County city.
Earlville residents concerned about safety point to the planned transport center's proximity to nearby wind turbines.
"It'll carry sand over everything," Earlville resident Peggy Hanna told the Chicago Tribune. "For people who have trouble breathing now, that's going to be really tough."
Earlville Mayor Mike Hall said he has spoken with various experts and maintains that the facility would not pose a safety threat to the community.
"I'm confident from my research and the people I've contacted and dealt with ... that it would be a safe entity for our community," said Hall, a supporter of the project, which is expected to create 20 full-time jobs.