To the editor:
Kaw Valley Companies has applied for a permit to open an off-river sand pit mine near Eudora, and public comments on the proposal are due to the Army Corps of Engineers and KDHE by March 9. (Another permit for the same project is currently delayed for 90 days before the Lawrence-Douglas County Planning Commission.)
Friends of the Kaw (FOK) commends Kaw Valley Companies for considering an off-river pit mine as an alternative to the highly destructive practice of in-river sand dredging. Our economy needs affordable sand, and FOK is happy to work with companies on appropriate environmental siting for pit mines.
However, we have concerns about this location. The site is on a river bend with active erosion and the Corps has already spent a great deal of money constructing wing dikes. The sand excavation pit would cause major damage to riparian forest, a problem for both bank erosion and wildlife habitat.
More information on the permit and submitting comments is available at www.kansasriver.org/stopdredging.