I don’t believe that the hobby demand for sand is currently contributing to the issue. However, it is something that is worth noting based on the information from the article, which I would encourage you to read. I bet you didn’t realize all of the things that require sand to produce and/or build.
I bet when you’re reading about conservation issues within the context of the aquarium hobby, you probably think habitat and species conservation. Looks like you might want to add sand to that list. That’s right, unbeknownst to most hobbyists (I’m betting) is that, by weight, sand and gravel are the most extracted natural resources on the planet, even surpassing fossil fuels. Per this article from The Conversation, the demand for sand is at an all time high. Though based on current sand prices, it doesn’t appear that the basic supply for consumers is dwindling. However, it is a bit disconcerting, especially given many of the problems outlined in the article. Lots of cichlidophiles have tanks with sand substrates. All my tanks do.