The available coal resources for the nine 7.5-minute quadrangles in the northern Wasatch Plateau Coalfield, Carbon and Emery Counties, Utah (C-100)

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Coal and Coalbed Methane

By: D. E. Tabet, J. C. Quick, B. P Hucka, and J. A. Hanson

This report provides estimates of the available coal resources in nine 7.5-minute quadrangles that encompass the northern half of the Wasatch Plateau coalfield. Coal production from this area has doubled during the last decade and accounts for more than 70 percent of Utah's 1996 total production.

Calculations show that the nine quadrangles in the study area originally contained more than 9.2 billion tons of coal, of which 5.4 billion tons occurred in beds that could be mined underground. The calculations are based on data from over 600 drill holes and measured sections entered into a Geographic Information System (GIS) software program on a personal computer. The GIS program was used to produce maps showing the spatial distribution and thickness of individual coalbeds from which estimates of coal tonnage were made. Examples of these maps and derived tonnage data are provided; together, they show the extent of past mining, the remaining available coal, and deductions from the original coal resource base due to technical and land-use restrictions (appendix A). Comparison of underground mine maps with associated coalbed isopach maps show mining has removed, or made unrecoverable, 1 billion tons of the original minable coal. If restrictions to mining (such as the prohibition to mining under streams, lakes, and roads) are also considered, derived maps show that 3.8 billion tons are available for future mining. Assuming 30 percent resource recovery, a maximum of 1.1 billion tons of this coal might ultimately be produced from the northern Wasatch Plateau. Depletion of the most attractive coal resources is anticipated by 2040.

Other Information:
Published: 1999
Pages: 46 p.
Location: Carbon and Emery Counties
Media Type: Paper Publication

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