Flames have consumed several acres of forest after an attack on a pipeline in northeastern Colombia has wreaked devastating environmental havoc, Colombian media reported on Friday.
The attack occurred Thursday night along the Caño Limon-Coveñas oil pipeline near the town of El Tarra in the state of Norte de Santander, according to Colombia’s Pulzo newspaper.
According to Colombia’s W Radio, this new attack has paralyzed oil production and has caused economic losses for oil company Ecopetrol, which has been the target of guerrilla attacks in recent months.
One of the most serious attacks came on March 25 in the rural town of Toledo, Norte de Santander, that could only be repaired after a month because of interference from the U’wa indigenous community.
The attack in March halted the production of 2.2 million barrels of oil per month, resulting in the loss of over $136 million in royalties, taxes, and dividends for the Colombian government.
To date, there have been over 19 attacks on he Caño Limon-Coveñas oil pipeline this year; however, authorities claim to have prevented at 30, according to Pulzo.