PROGRESS: Shale Boom Creates “Sand Millionaires.” “Drilling rigs need sand, lots of sand. In 2011, 28.7 million tons of sand was used in hydraulic fracturing according to PropTester Inc. and Kelrik LLC. And rigs need a type of sand that can handle tremendous pressure. That type is found along the Minnesota-Wisconsin border. The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis reports that this demand has created a sand boom in communities there. This boom has created jobs. Each frac mine employs 10 to 20 workers, and each processing plant employs 40 to 50 people. These operations also require truck drivers to move the sand from the mine to the plant then to rail terminals.”