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The company that wants to build a coal export terminal in Longview, Washington, is keeping lawyers busy this week on multiple fronts. In recent months, the Millennium Bulk Terminals project has suffered repeated setbacks, mainly in the form of permit denials.

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A federal civil trial in Seattle against Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway is on hold pending a tentative settlement in a case brought by seven environmental groups that has been in litigation since 2013.

Plaintiffs argued coal dust and pieces of coal the company ships from Wyoming’s Powder River Basin across the Northwest have been polluting Washington’s waterways for years in violation of the federal Clean Water Act.

Raymond D. Woods Jr. / Flickr - tinyurl.com/oyg9znx

Seven environmental groups want to prove coal being hauled by rail is polluting Washington’s waterways. If they are successful, the outcome could have huge implications for the way trains are regulated going forward.

The case is scheduled to go to trial in Seattle Monday.

U.S. Department of Transportation

Two weeks ago, the Spokane City Council approved a ballot measure that garnered national attention. It would impose a fine on every rail car that transports coal or oil through the heart of the city.  Monday the council could consider its withdrawal.

Emily Schwing / Northwest News Network

Dozens of people drove hundreds of miles from Wyoming, Montana and Idaho to Spokane Thursday to weigh in on a proposed coal export terminal. The terminal would sit along the Columbia River in Longview. But the permitting agencies want input from inland cities along the train tracks.

Tedder / Wikimedia - tinyurl.com/jgr4twe

By the year 2030, the electricity that most Oregonians use won't be powered by coal. That's the goal of a measure that's moving through the Oregon Legislature. The state House approved the plan Tuesday.

Peabody Energy

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead is in the midst of his second tour in less than a year to drum up support to export coal through the Northwest.

Wikimedia

Coal export terminals are in the permitting process in both Washington and Oregon, but they face heavy opposition.

Miriam Duerr / Washington Department of Ecology

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has laid out his wish list for how he'd like the state to combat global warming pollution.