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Citizens group challenging railroad’s wetland permit

LA CROSSE, Wis. (AP) — A group of citizens has gone to court in La Crosse County to try to block BNSF Railroad’s plans to build tracks through the La Crosse River marsh.

Citizens Acting for Rail Safety is asking a judge to block a wetland permit issued by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and require the agency to do a more thorough environmental review.

The DNR last month granted BNSF a permit to fill about 7 acres of marsh and build a bridge over the river. The railroad plans to add about four miles of new tracks through the city of La Crosse.

The La Crosse Tribune says the citizens group is concerned about the growing number of trains carrying crude oil from North Dakota, such as the one that derailed near Galena, Ill., last week and caught fire.

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