Mississippi Sand, LLC is the mining company that intends to mine for hydraulic fracking sand at Starved Rock State Park’s eastern entrance.  Below you will find an up-to-date timeline on the Starved Rock mine’s status for the various permitting agencies.

Jan 2012: LaSalle County Board approves Mississippi Sand, LLC sand mining special use amidst strong objections from local residents and organizations.

Feb 2012: Mississippi Sand files a permit application for surface mining to IDNR.

March 20, 2012: Thirty-three citizens send Citizen Complaint letter, requesting IDNR consider the short and long term impacts of this mine and hold a public hearing via the Rivers, Lakes and Streams Act.

March 20, 2012: Ernats file application for NPDES construction permit to IEPA.

May 14, 2012: Mississippi Sand files application for air pollution permit to IEPA.

May 18, 2012: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency (IHPA) rejects Mississippi Sand’s original Archaeological Survey, citing it was incomplete.

May 23, 2012: IEPA holds Public Availability Session as an opportunity for public input on pending air and water construction permits.

June 7, 2012: Sierra Club issues a comment letter to IEPA, citing concerns for the integrity of the air, water, land, economic, historic, and aesthetic quality.

June 15, 2012: IDNR issues the bond and fee request letter to
Mississippi Sand, LLC. The permitting process may be completed upon submission of the bond and fee.

July 3, 2012: IDNR responded to the March 2012 Citizen Complaint letter, stating that Horseshoe Creek is not listed under the Rivers, Lakes and Streams Act and thus a public hearing will not be held.

July 9, 2012: IDNR issues Sierra Club a response to the June 7 comments, stating they have no authority to restrict where the mine is located.

 August 3, 2012: Sierra Club responded to IDNR’s letters on June 9th and July 3rd, again reiterating their responsibility to protect public lands.

August 7, 2012: Lt Governor Sheila Simon holds a special call for this issue with the Illinois River Coordinating Committee (IRCC).

August 10, 2012: Endangered Species Protection Board holds a meeting to discuss the mine. They determine that it is not in their jurisdiction to object.

September 27, 2012: IEPA approves air and NPDES construction permits.

September 27, 2012: IHPA signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Mississippi Sand, in which they accept the mining company’s revised Archaeological Survey and plan to avoid impacts to the Native American Artifacts on site.

October 2, 2012: Lt Governor Sheila Simon holds a second call with IRCC to discuss the issues with Mississippi Sand, LLC’s proposed mine.

October 16, 2012: IRCC quarterly meeting allows an opportunity for public comment regarding the Starved Rock mine.

October 22, 2012: IEPA issues a notice of intent to issue a general NPDES permit for the mine’s discharges.

November 13, 2012: IDNR Office of Mines and Minerals approves the reclamation permit to Mississippi Sand, LLC.

November 18, 2012: Sierra Club, along with Prairie Rivers Network and Openlands submits a comment letter to IEPA requesting an individual permit.

December 12, 2012: Sierra Club, Prairie Rivers Network and Openlands file lawsuit against IDNR-OMM, demanding judicial review of the mining permit. See our Press Release located on our Media Page.

January 31, 2013: IEPA approves Mississippi Sand’s discharge permit, allowing 1.4-5.1 million gallons of discharge into Horseshoe Creek (and thus Starved Rock State park) per day. Sierra Club, PRN, and Openlands issued a joint statement located on our Media Page.

6 thoughts on “Timeline


  2. A sand mine by Starved Rock State Park–incomprehensible!!!!! 2,5 million visitors go there for peace and quiet and to reflect on their lives and return home renewed.

  3. Why are we electing politicians that agree with such outlandish proposals that will wreck our natural outdoors?

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