What do the colored dots mean?
The colors indicate status and mine type:
- Proposed: All projects that have been announced (via corporate or government planning documents), under permitting (including feasibility studies), or under construction are considered “proposed.” A proposal is considered active if it has shown activity over the past two years. The proposed category only includes mine projects and mine expansions for which a designed capacity figure of 1 million tonnes per annum has been projected.
- Operating: Mines that have begun coal removal are considered operating. This includes mines that have produced coal within the year, even if temporarily suspended by work stoppages or care and maintenance. In China, mines are considered “operational” once testing operations and experimental operations begin, which is prior to commercial production.
- Underground: When the mine’s work environment is below ground, enclosed by an overhead coal seam, rock, or soils (e.g. longwall mining, room and pillar mining, etc.).
- Surface: When the mine’s work environment is above ground, extracting coal from the surface after the removal of overburden (e.g. open pit mining, mountaintop removal mining, etc.).
Can I change the status categories that the map is showing?
Yes, go to the legend (bottom right corner of the map) and click in the box next to a color.
What do the numbers in the circles mean?
The numbers tell the number of mine operations or projects at each location (such as an operating mine with a proposed expansion, or a “cluster” of network mines). To find information on each operation, click on the number, then select one of the colored dots.
I’ve zoomed in, but don’t see a coal mine. Why?
If a coal mine is still in the proposal phase, prior to construction and extraction, there may be no sign of activity. In other cases, only approximate location information could be found. Underground mines may show limited activity above ground. Finally, satellite photos in some geographies are updated infrequently, so recent activity is not shown.
How do I find out if a location is exact or approximate?
Locations tend to be known with greater accuracy as mines move from early stages of development toward construction. To find out the coordinates of a location and whether a location is exact or approximate, click on the location dot, select the wiki page, and look under “Project Details.”
Can I see a list of the coal mines?
Yes, click on “Table” in the top left corner of the map.
How were the carbon dioxide figures derived?
The tracker uses a calculation based on size of plant, type of combustion technology, and variety of coal. For details, see Estimating Carbon Dioxide Emissions from Coal Mines on GEM.wiki.
How were the methane figures derived?
The tracker uses a calculation based on production, gas content at mine depth, and an emissions factor coefficient. For details, see Estimating Methane Emissions from Coal mines” on GEM.wiki.
Does the tracker show all the operating mines in each country?
As of January 2020, the Global Coal Mine Tracker includes all operating mines producing 5 million tonnes per annum or greater. Future updates will include smaller mines and increased global coverage.
Does the tracker show all proposed mines in each county?
As of January 2020, the Global Coal Mine Tracker includes all proposed mines and mine expansions with a capacity of 1 million tonnes per annum or greater. Future updates will include smaller projects.
What is the difference between “production” and “capacity?”
Production is the coal output of a mine and capacity is the amount of coal the mine is engineered to produce. The tracker provides coal production data in million tonnes (Mt) at operating mines and designed capacity (Mt) at proposed operations. If recent production figures are unavailable at an operating mine, then capacity figures are substituted.
Does production tonnage refer to unprocessed run of mine (ROM) coal or saleable coal?
Whenever possible, the tracker uses saleable production figures (the tonnage after processing) rather than ROM tonnage recorded before processing that may include raw materials and waste.
How do you define coal reserves?
The tracker collects data on recoverable coal reserves in million tonnes (Mt): the amount of coal at a mine that is considered economically mineable with the highest degree of confidence. Recoverable reserves include measured resources that are sufficiently “proved” and indicated/measured resources that are “probable.” When unavailable, the tracker collects data on marketable reserves or resource figures. For details, see Coal Reserves” on GEM.wiki.
Improving the Tracker
What if I find an error or a missing project?
Please use the contact form to let us know about any errors or omissions.
Who built this tool?
The tracker was designed and produced by Global Energy Monitor. The information in the tracker has been verified by researchers familiar with particular countries. The following people participated in mine-by-mine research: Özgür Acir (Association of Geological Researches – JADE), Noorafsha Adbulla (Conservation Action Trust), Mary Beckman (Global Energy Monitor), James Browning (Global Energy Monitor), Bob Burton (Global Energy Monitor), Gregor Clark (Global Energy Monitor), Dulguun Gantulga (Global Energy Monitor), Anne Grainger (Coal Action Network), Celia Hack (Global Energy Monitor), Julie Joly (Global Energy Monitor), Prasad Khale (Conservation Action Trust), Madhuresh Kumar (NAPM India), Tiffany Means (Global Energy Monitor), Dorothy Mei (Global Energy Monitor), Ted Nace (Global Energy Monitor), Christine Shearer (Global Energy Monitor), Ryan Driskell Tate (Global Energy Monitor), Adrian Wilson (Global Energy Monitor), Aiqun Yu (Global Energy Monitor), Feng Yun (Global Energy Monitor), Scott Zimmerman (Global Energy Monitor). The tracker architect was Ted Nace. The project director is Ryan Driskell Tate. Web/GIS programming was done by Tom Allnutt and Gregor Allensworth (GreenInfo Network), with support from Tim Sinnott (GreenInfo Network).
How do I cite the data?
Please cite the data as Global Energy Monitor’s Global Coal Mine Tracker, with either the date of the database release or the date that the map data was accessed.