RFG 2018 Conference


Trace elements in coal ash

Coal ash is a residual waste product primarily produced by coal combustion for electric power generation. Coal ash includes fly ash, bottom ash, and flue-gas desulfurization products (at powerplants equipped with flue-gas desulfurization systems). Fly ash, the most common form of coal ash, is used in a range of products, especially construction materials. A new Environmental Protection Agency ruling upholds designation of coal ash as a non-hazardous waste under Subtitle D of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, allowing for the continued beneficial use of coal ash and also designating procedures and requirements for its storage.

Alaska coal resources and coalbed methane potential

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is assessing coal resources in Alaska and the conterminous United States to deter-mine the quantity, quality, and minability of coal likely to be used within the next 30 years. This assessment is critical because the utilization of clean (low sulfur content and low ash yield) coal has been rising in the United States and because coal is the least expensive fuel for generation of electrical power. Previous coal resource assessments attempted to assess the total coal in the ground in the United States and Alaska, but those estimates tended to be high and included coal deposits that are either not available (contain coal beds that are too thin and (or) too deep to be economically mined using present mining technology) or that are not of sufficient quality to serve as a fuel for electrical power generation. Thus, a new assessment was required that focused on coal resources likely to be utilized in the next 30 years, which are for the most part coal beds currently being developed in existing mines or in areas that are currently leased in Alaska.

A summary of the U.S. Geological Survey 1999 resource assessment of selected coal zones in the Northern Rocky Mountains and Great Plains region, Wyoming, Montana, and North Dakota

In 1999, 1,100 million short tons of coal were produced in the United States, 38 percent from the Northern Rocky Mountains and Great Plains region. This coal has low ash content, and sulfur content is in compliance with Clean Air Act standards (U.S. Statutes at Large, 1990).The National Coal Resource Assessment for this region includes geologic, stratigraphic, palynologic, and geochemical studies and resource calculations for 18 major coal zones in the Powder River, Williston, Green River, Hanna, and Carbon Basins. tons. Survey Professional Paper 1625–A (Fort Union Coal Assessment Team, 1999) and Open-File Report 99-376 (Flores and others, 1999) in CD-ROM format.

The National Coal Resource Assessment Overview

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has completed the National Coal Resource Assessment (NCRA), a multiyear project by the USGS Energy Resources Program, in partnership with State geological surveys in the coal producing regions of the United States. The NCRA is the first digital national coal-resource assessment. Coal beds and zones were assessed in five regions that account for more than 90 percent of the Nation’s coal production—(1) the Appalachian Basin, (2) the Illinois Basin, (3) the Gulf Coastal Plain, (4) the Colorado Plateau, and (5) the Northern Rocky Mountains and Great Plains. The purpose of this Professional Paper, USGS Professional Paper 1625–F, is to present a tabulation and overview of the assessment results, insight into the methods used in the NCRA, and supplemental information on coal quality, economics, and other factors that affect coal production in the United States.

Resource assessment of the Springfield, Herrin, Danville, and Baker coals in the Illinois Basin

The goal of this resource assessment of Illinois Basin coals is to provide an overview of the geologic setting, distribution, resources, and quality of Pennsylvanian-age coals in the basin as part of the U.S. Geological Survey's National Coal Resource Assessment Project (NCRA). The area of coal-bearing rocks in the Illinois Basin (fig. 1) comprises 36,800 square miles in Illinois, 6,500 square miles in southwestern Indiana, and 6,400 square miles in western Kentucky. This area is also referred to as the “Eastern Region of the Interior Coal Province” (Trumbull, 1960). This assessment differs from previous coal assessments in that (1) the major emphasis is placed on coals that are most likely to be mined over the next few decades, and (2) data are being collected and stored in digital formats that can be updated as new information becomes available (Gluskoter and others, 1996). Most past, current, and expected future coal production in the Illinois Basin is from the Springfield, Herrin, Danville, and Baker Coals.

Utah's Extractive Resource Industries, 2013

During 2013, Utah extractive resource industries produced energy and mineral commodities with an estimated gross value of $9.5 billion. On an inflation-adjusted basis, this is a $1 billion (12%) increase from 2012, and $1.2 billion (11%) less than the 2008 record high of $10.7 billion. Total energy production in 2013 was valued at $5.6 billion, which includes $2.96 billion from crude oil production, $2.11 billion from natural gas and natural gas liquids production, and $0.58 billion from coal production. Nonfuel mineral production was valued at $3.9 billion, including $2.21 billion from base metal production, $1.3 billion from industrial mineral production, and $0.37 billion from precious metal production.

Interactive map of abandoned mines in Virginia

The Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy's interactive map shows the locations of abandoned coal mines throughout the state of Virginia. The map allows users to explore a range of mine features. These features are important because abandoned mines have many land-related problems such as landslides, stream sedimentation, hazardous structures, dangerous highwalls, subsidence, loss of water, acid mine drainage, and open mine portals.

The Hartshorne play in southeastern Oklahoma: regional and detailed sandstone reservoir analysis and coal-bed methane resources

The Hartshorne (pronounced Harts' -horn) Formation was first named in 1899 by Tafffrom exposures of coal, sandstone, and shale near the town of Hartshorne, Oklahoma. This area gained attention geologically before statehood because of widespread coal deposits that were mined within parts of the Hartshorne Kiowa syncline, which trends just north ofthe city of Hartshorne. Taff did not designate a type section in this area, even though the Hartshorne Formation is considerably thicker here than in all other places along the outcrop belt This may be for the best, as there are much better exposures of the Hartshorne Formation elsewhere in the Arkoma basin.

Coal geology of McIntosh County, Oklahoma

Mcintosh County is located in the east-central part of the coal belt of eastern Oklahoma, and almost the entire county is underlain by coal-bearing strata of Desmomesian (Middle Pennsylvanian) age. For lack of data about coal depth and thlckness, resource potential is unknown for ~75% of the county-mostly in its western and southern parts. Structural complexity further inhibits evaluation of resources.

2013 Annual coalbed-methane regional groundwater monitoring report: Powder River Basin, Montana

This report presents groundwater data collected through September 2013 from within the Montana portion of the Powder River Basin, with an emphasis on data collected during water year 2013 (October through September). This is the 11th year in which the Montana coalbed-methane (CBM) regional groundwater monitoring network has been fully active. The network was initiated to document baseline hydrogeologic conditions in current and prospective CBM areas in southeastern Montana, determine actual groundwater impacts, document recovery, help present factual data, and provide data and interpretations to aid environmental analyses and permitting decisions. The current monitoring network consists of monitoring wells installed during the late 1970s and early 1980s in response to actual and potential coal mining, monitoring wells installed specific to CBM impacts, domestic wells, stock wells, and springs.


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