Coal finds its usage in many industries. The fossil fuel has been a key source of power generation for over hundred years now.
The world’s total proven coal reserves were 1,035 billion tonnes (Bt) in 2017, with the US holding the largest share in deposits, according to BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2018 report.
Here is the list of countries with the largest proven reserves of coal:
With 250.9Bt of proven coal reserves, the US has the world’s biggest coal reserves. Despite the rise of renewable energies, coal continues to be a major source of power generation in the North American nation. The country is home to the world’s biggest coal mine, the North Antelope Rochelle mine, which is located 104.6km south of Gillette, Wyoming. Operated by Peabody Powder River Mining and, the mine produced 101.5 million short tonnes of coal in 2017.
The other coal mines in the country include Antelope Coal Mine, Eagle Butte Mine, Cordero Rojo Mine, Belle Ayr Mine, Freedom Mine and Black Thunder. The country’s coal reserves accounts for 24.2% of the world’s total proven coal reserves.
Holding 160.3Bt of proven coal reserves in 2017, Russia stands at second spot in the list. The country’s major coal deposits include the Donetskii reserves in Moscow, the Pechora basins in Western Russia and the Kuznetski, Kansk-Achinsk, Irkutsk and South Yakutsk basins in Eastern Russia. A significant part of the coal produced in the country is hard coal. Russia’s coal reserves accounts for 15.5% of the world’s total proven coal reserves.
Australia has the world’s third biggest proven coal reserves, with 144.8Bt in 2017. The country’s black coal reserves are mainly located in New South Wales and Queensland. The country’s coal reserves accounts for 14% of the world’s total proven coal reserves. Australia’s major coal mines include Peak Downs coal mine and Mt Arthur coal mine, which are also among the world’s biggest coal mines.
The Peak Downs is a large open cut coking coal mine that is estimated to hold coal reserves of 1,063 million tonnes. The mine started production in 1972. Located in the Hunter Valley region of New South Wales, Mt Arthur coal mine is also an open-cut coal mine. Coal produced at the site is supplied to domestic and international customers.
With coal reserves of 138.8Bt, China stands at fourth place in the list. More than two-thirds of China’s proven recoverable coal reserves are located in the north and north-west parts of the country. The Haerwusu Coal Mine, located in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region of China, finds place in the list of the world’s biggest coal mines. Spread over an area of 67km², the mine is situated in the middle of the Zhungeer Coalfield. China’s state-owned Shenhua Group owns and operates the mine.
The open-pit Hei Dai Gou coal mine is the other major coal mine in the country. The mine produces low sulphur and low phosphorus coal, which is said to be ideal for power generation. China’s coal reserves accounts for 13.4% of the world’s total proven coal reserves.
With 977.2Bt of proven coal reserves in 2017, India stands at fifth spot in the list. The eastern states of Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Orissa and West Bengal hold over two-thirds of the country’s coal reserves. Raniganj Coalfield, Birbhum Coalfield, Bokaro, and Korba are the major coal mines in India. Coal is the source for more than half of the power generation in the country. India’s coal reserves accounts for 9.4% of the world’s total proven coal reserves.