What Are Some Facts About Coal?


Among the numerous notable facts about coal is that the United States has the most coal reserves of any other country, as of 2015. Furthermore, coal is still actively mined in 25 states and is used to provide electricity to 48 states.

The coal reserves in the United States represent one quarter of the coal reserves in the whole world, as of 2015. The U.S. has over 260 billion tons of coal and uses 925 million tons per year. The amount of energy that can be produced from these coal reserves is more than the energy that would be produced by all of the known oil reserves available in the Middle East.

Coal is mined in many states in the U.S. In 2013, the highest coal-producing states were Wyoming, West Virginia, Kentucky, Illinois and Pennsylvania. Coal mining accounts for more than 700,000 jobs, directly and indirectly, in the U.S.

Coal is used to provide electricity to 48 states; the only states that do not use coal are Rhode Island, which uses mostly natural gas, and Vermont, which primarily uses nuclear energy to produce electricity. In 18 states, coal is used to produce more than half the electricity for residential and commercial purposes.