I wish to express with this letter my deepest gratitude to Winona County commissioners Greg Olson, Marie Kovecsi and Jim Pomeroy for voting in favor of banning the extraction of industrial silica sand, at the last Nov. 22 county board meeting.

You are courageous leaders, and I praise you for your tenacity and wisdom while dealing with this very delicate issue.

This effort is the outstanding outcome of community work and action! This effort is also a clear indication that social justice, environmental stewardship and sustainability remain high values for a majority of citizens in Winona County.

I am proud to live in a community that is understanding of the imperative needs of conserving our natural resource base (soil, air, water, biodiversity) despite the emphases on continuing to consume the same as if they were inexhaustible.

I am proud to be part of a community that is willing to respond critically to illusory narratives that are supportive of developing wealth for few profiteers and an economy that is extractive and oblivious of long-term environmental consequences.

I am excited to live in a community that is still willing to counteract the bullying of the corporative, industrial complex with consistency and commitment.

I am enthusiastic for the support that the position taken now by Winona County with the frac sand ban is giving to the water protectors in North Dakota.

This community success will hopefully trigger more action and successes in the future ahead, because the time has come to value more our natural capital than our individual bank accounts.

The banning of frac sand mining has made history, and this achievement can be considered (in my opinion) the stepping-stone to a sustainable development in our region.

I am sure that more counties will soon follow Winona’s example, and many years from now, our great-grandchildren and their children will be grateful for the decision we have just made.

Bruno Borsari