4 million tons of ore a year to be shipped out of Carboneras

As if the Sorbas yeso mines didn’t generate enough traffic, we learn today that four million tons of ore a year is to be shipped out of Carboneras port from mines in Granada after Almeria city refused to allow the lorries access to the port there.

Minas de Alquife SL is reopening ore mines in eastern Granada, and had been negotiating access to Almeria port with the city. But the city, horrified at the thought of hundreds of heavily laden lorries a day trundling along the paseo, refused access unless the company used the railway, something which Minas de Alquife has rejected on cost grounds.

So a new accord has been signed with Carboneras port to ship it all out of there, adding about 120km per lorry.

Alquife is on the plains of Granada past Huenejar, to the left of where all the massive wind turbines on the plain are when you drive to Granada. From the motorway you can see the old quarries – those enormous banks of earth off in the distance. Google maps reckons it’s 150km from there to Carboneras.

Alquife mines aerial view
Alquife mines aerial view

The company is spending 200 million euros to reopen a series of mainly iron ore mines in the area – open cast, I believe – and will generate some 1,500 jobs. The mines are expected to last 20 years, and we will be left with the massive scars for the rest of our lives. In total, some 80 million tons of iron ore is believed to be in the exploitation area.

Work on the mines will start early in 2015, with the first shipments starting at the end of the year reports La Voz.

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