Coal mining is the process of extracting coal from the ground. Coal is valued for its energy content and since the 1880s, has been widely used to generate electricity. Steel and cement industries use coal as a fuel for extraction of iron from iron ore and for cement production.
What is the process of coal mining?
Coal miners use two primary methods to remove coal
In surface mining, large machines remove the topsoil and layers of rock known as overburden to expose coal seams. … Underground mining, sometimes called deep mining, is necessary when the coal is several hundred feet below the surface.
Why is coal mining bad?
Along with adding to greenhouse gas pollution, burning coal emits toxic and carcinogenic substances into our air, water and land, severely affecting the health of miners, workers and surrounding communities.
What are the causes of coal mining?
There are significant environmental impacts associated with coal mining and use. It could require the removal of massive amounts of top soil, leading to erosion, loss of habitat and pollution. Coal mining causes acid mine drainage, which causes heavy metals to dissolve and seep into ground and surface water.
What are the 2 types of coal mining?
Surface mining and deep underground mining are the two basic methods of mining. The choice of mining method depends primarily on depth, density, overburden, and thickness of the coal seam; seams relatively close to the surface, at depths less than approximately 55 m (180 ft), are usually surface mined.
Is coal mining still dangerous?
Coal mining is still dangerous. In 2010, West Virginia had the worst coal mining disaster in the US in 40 years, when an explosion killed 29 people. … That year, 3,242 people died in coal mining accidents. Coal mines have continued to have fires and explosions, killing hundreds of miners over the years.
Does coal have a future?
The current administration favors coal, but that policy may not continue in future administrations. Displacing coal-fired power generation is a very cost-effective way to reduce U.S. energy-related greenhouse gas emissions, and thus could be targeted by a future administration more concerned about climate.
Is coal the dirtiest fossil fuel?
Reading the headlines, it would be easy to conclude that coal is dead. The International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates the most polluting fossil fuel to be responsible for nearly one-third of global warming, and it is now struggling to attract financing and compete with cheaper alternatives.
What are the disadvantages of coal?
The major disadvantage of coal is its negative impact on the environment. Coal-burning energy plants are a major source of air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to carbon monoxide and heavy metals like mercury, the use of coal releases sulfur dioxide, a harmful substance linked to acid rain.
What are the positive effects of coal mining?
10 reasons why coal is a good energy source:
- Cheapest source of energy. …
- Coal also provides a stable source of energy (no Arab oil embargoes, no sudden scarcity like you experience with natural gas) and there is a very plentiful supply both in the U.S. and in other foreign countries.
What are the problems with coal mining?
The environmental challenges from coal mining include coal mine accidents, land subsidence, damage to the water environment, mining waste disposal and air pollution. These are either environmental pollution or landscape change.
What is the average lifespan of a coal miner?
The average life expectancy in the coal mines for those starting work at 15 y was found to be 58.91 y and 49.23 y for surface and underground workers respectively. In the coloured/metal mines they were 60.24 y and 56.55 y respectively.
What are the 4 types of coal?
Coal is classified into four main types, or ranks: anthracite, bituminous, subbituminous, and lignite.
Which is the best type of coal?
What are the types of coal?
- Anthracite: The highest rank of coal. …
- Bituminous: Bituminous coal is a middle rank coal between subbituminous and anthracite. …
- Subbituminous: Subbituminous coal is black in color and dull (not shiny), and has a higher heating value than lignite.
Why is mining dangerous?
Mines are often home to many dangerous gases including carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, methane, and carbon dioxide. Due to the confined spaces, these gases are not always able to escape, building up within the mine. … Following a methane explosion, consecutive coal dust explosions can also occur.