Coal Mining

Esteemed for its energy content, coal mining, apart from obtaining coal also gives other resources from the ground. Used to generate electricity from 1880's, over the years, it has had many developments. Even though some deep mining works took place as early as the 1500s in the region of North East England and along the Firth of Forth coast, it was during the late 18th century, deep shaft mining began to develop extensively in the UK, however it cropped up with a rapid expansion throughout the 19th century and early 20th century when the industry peaked. Mined in various parts of the world, this particular activity continues to be an important economic activity today. Currently, over 6185 million tonnes (Mt) of hard coal is produced worldwide. The regions of coal mining are often linked with the social, cultural and environmental impact. Following are the top five hard coal producers and it includes:

  • China
  • USA
  • India
  • Australia and
  • South Africa
Just about 15% of hard coal production is intended for international coal market, while much of the production is used in the country in which it is produced.


At present, The North Antelope Rochelle coal mine in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming, US, is the world's largest coal mine by reserve. As of December 2012, it was estimated to be full of more than 2.3 billion tonnes of recoverable coal.

Mining methods of coal include:

It is the geology of the coal deposit that determines the choice of mining method.


Coal Mining Images