Colombia Orders Drummond to Halt Coal Loading

Posted on Jan 4 2014 - 11:36am by Editor

(Bloomberg) Colombia’s environmental authority, Corpamag, ordered Drummond Co. to halt loading at its Caribbean port, potentially disrupting exports from the country’s second-biggest coal producer.

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Corpamag is the environmental agency in Magdalena province where Drummond’s port operation is located.

The ruling orders Drummond to “suspend all its activities of loading and unloading of coal done outside the system of direct loading”, until it can comply with new rules that coal must be loaded directly onto ships.

Colombia’s Environment Ministry said last month that the Alabama-based co. would be able to continue to load coal using barges and cranes for a time, and would face a “taximeter” of daily fines. The company said in a statement today that it will be ready to comply with the new rules by March.

Drummond continued to export coal today and yesterday in violation of the new rules, Santa Marta Harbor Master Oscar Mantilla said today.

Drummond is the country’s biggest coal exporter after Cerrejon, a mining company owned by BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP), Anglo American Plc. (AAL) and Glencore Xstrata Plc. (GLEN) Coal is Colombia’s biggest export after oil.