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Colombia coal railway threatens legal action to restore night transportation

World Coal,

Colombia’s main coal railway is taking legal action in an attempt to overturn a ban on night transportation.

The country’s constitutional court ruled earlier this month that the private Fenoco coal railway can no longer run overnight due to noise, in a response to a complaint lodged by local citizens. The ban threatens export to European power producers.

Railway operator Fenoco is asking the court to revise the ban on transportation between 10.30pm and 4.30am. The country’s Mines and Energy Ministry is also involved. Minister Tomas Gonzalez commented: “The ban could restrict an eighth of Colombia’s coal production if it’s not solved soon. It’s an important impact”.

Coal is Colombia’s main export and a key source of government revenue. The country produced 85.5 million t of coal in 2013 and 88.6 million t last year.

Units of Drummon Co., Glencore Plc and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which between them produce more than half of Colombian coal, are served by the railway. The ban will cut transport capacity by 25%, equivalent to an annual loss of 14 – 16 million t, Fenoco has suggested.

Written by Emma McAleavey.

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