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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database
With the increased interest in coal in recent years has come a demand for accurate reserve figures on a regional basis. The tonnage of coal in the area in question is usually all that is considered. This presents a grossly simplified picture, because accuracy is usually implied which may not exist, and much information is not available. With a better understanding of the nature of the raw data and the interpretation process, better use can be made of reserve figures.
To illustrate the process of producing regional coal-reserve figures, recent work of the West Virginia Geological Survey on the Winifrede coal in Boone County was chosen. First, the types of data were considered both from the viewpoint of method of collection and from the viewpoint of value and accuracy. Next, the geologic interpretations, structure, outcrop, cross section, and isopach, were considered. Then the engineering and mining interpretations, percent parting, cover thickness, proximate analysis, sulfur values, mining height, mined area, and reserves, were determined. Finally, economic considerations were overlaid on the geologic and engineering considerations.
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