Coal is mined by both surface or ‘opencut’ (or opencast) and underground or ‘deep’ mining methods, depending on the local geology of the deposit. Underground mining currently accounts for about 60 per cent of world coal production but around 80 per cent of Australia’s coal is produced from opencut mines.
How is coal extracted?
Coal can be extracted from the earth either by surface mining or underground mining. Once coal has been extracted, it can be used directly (for heating and industrial processes) or to fuel power plants for electricity. If coal is less than 61 meters (200 feet) underground, it can be extracted through surface mining.
How is coal processed in Australia?
In Australia, nearly 80% of coal is produced from open-cut mines, in contrast to the rest of the world where open-cut mining only accounts for 40% of coal production. Open-cut mining is possible because coal seams are close to the surface.
Where is coking coal mined in Australia?
The Peak Downs coal mine is located in the Bowen Basin of central Queensland and is currently the country’s biggest coal mine by recoverable reserves. The open-pit mine has been producing high-quality hard coking coal since 1972 and was estimated to hold 718Mt of recoverable coal reserves last year.
How much money does Australia get from coal?
In financial year 2019, the export value of coal from Australia was approximately 69.6 billion Australian dollars. The value of coal exports had almost doubled over the past decade, with coal being one of the leading export commodities in the country.
Is Coal still being formed?
The process of coal formation is still taking place today, says Bailey. “The precursor to coal is called peat, and that is just uncompressed plant matter.” Peat accumulates in wet swampy environments known as mires, and that process is taking place today in areas such as Indonesia and even the Antiplano in the Andes.
How dangerous is coal mining?
Working in coal mines is dangerous — miners have to deal with toxic gases, plus the threat of being crushed, drowned, or injured from fires and explosions.
Does Australia have a lot of coal?
In Australia coal deposits occur in all States and the Northern Territory and range from 15 million to 225 million years old. Coal is primarily used as a fuel to generate electricity and in Australia is used to produce about 80% of the nation’s electricity requirements.
Who does Australia sell coal to?
Outside China, Australia’s major thermal coal customers are Japan and South Korea, which present a more positive picture for Australian coal miners. Australia’s exports to Japan have picked up slightly in recent months, with October’s 8.3 million tonnes and September’s 8.45 million being the best since March.
Who is the biggest exporter of coal?
Searchable List of All Coal Exporting Countries in 2019RankExporter2018-91.Australia-5.9%2.Indonesia+4.1%3.Russia-6.1%4.United States-19.2%Ещё 6 строк
How long will coal last in Australia?
around 125 years
Is Australia the largest exporter of coal?
In 2016, Australia was the biggest net exporter of coal, with 32% of global exports (389 Mt out of 1,213 Mt total), and was the fourth-highest producer with 6.9% of global production (503 Mt out of 7,269 Mt total).
What is the name for the highest rank coal?
Anthracite. Anthracite is the highest rank coal. It is a black, shiny, hard rock and is not friable. It is low in volatile matter and this makes it difficult to burn in rotary kilns.
Who is the biggest buyer of Australian coal?
How clean is Australian coal?
Australia’s electricity sector is the nation’s largest source of greenhouse gas pollution, producing 33% of Australia’s greenhouse gas pollution levels in 2017. There is no such thing as clean coal. No matter how “efficient” a coal-fired power station, it is always polluting.
Which country has the best quality coal?
Experts told Fact Check that Australia’s coal is on average high quality as a result of its low moisture and ash content, and high carbon content, compared with other countries, particularly Indonesia, the largest coal exporter in the world.