The demand for sand used to drill for oil and natural gas is hitting record levels, according to Wisconsin Public Radio.

United States energy companies will consume more than 84 million tons of proppant — sand and other materials used to “prop” open cracks in oil-rich shale deposits during the hydrofracking process — this year, according to a study by energy analytics firm IHS Markit projects. That’s a 27 percent increase over last year.

Furthermore, the study predicts proppant demand will hit 115 million tons by 2023.

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