EDMONTON—Specialty Chemical distributor Di-Corp is breaking ground on a new 30-acre terminal to distribute sand used in hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.
The terminal is the beginning of a partnership between Di-Corp, Canadian National Railway Co. and Fracking sand maker Superior Silica Sands.
“The frac sand pumping market has been telling us for some time that we need to look to expand,” said Trevor Derksen, vice-president of Di-Corp. “This facility is a close replication of the existing facility we have in the Grand Prairie area.”
Superior Silica Sands and Di-Corp will start serving a new state-of-the art terminal near Rocky Mountain House, Alta., in early 2015 to meet rising demand for frac sand.
The facility will have three tracks capable of holding 95 rail cars for unloading and six silos with 2,000 tons of storage capacity.
“CN’s rail network is well positioned to help its frac sand customers compete in their end markets, with rail access to the largest North American frac sand consumption regions, including Western Canada, Texas and Marcellus shales,” said JJ Ruest, CN executive vice-president and chief marketing officer. “As a supply chain enabler, we offer our frac sand customers merchandise and unit train services to reach markets efficiently in both Canada and the U.S.”
Frac sand is used by the oil and gas industries in the hydraulic fracturing process to hold shale fractures open and let natural gas and oil flow out.