Economy, Business And Markets

Call for Scientific Approach to Coal Mining

Call for Scientific Approach to Coal MiningCall for Scientific Approach to Coal Mining

The deputy head of Geological Survey of Iran (GSI) in mineral affairs says inappropriate extraction of coal by the private sector negatively affect the mining industry, reported Eghtesadnews on Tuesday.

“Drainage and rinsing are crucial stages in extracting coal and should be carried out based on scientific principles as extraction costs in underground mines are much higher than that in open-pit mines”, said Behrooz Borna.

The GSI official added that inappropriate investment in the country’s coal mines is the loophole in the sector.

Currently, there are 178 coal mines across the country, out of which 124 are active mines while 47 are inactive and the remaining 7 are being equipped.

Some 620 million metric tons of proven coal reserves have been registered in Iran but investigations suggest that the probable reserves could exceed 3 billion metric tons, said Borna.

The country’s current 1.5-million-ton annual coal concentrate output is a serious concern for the industries that need the mineral, especially the metallurgical and steel industry. Mohammad Mojtahedzadeh, the director of the coal committee at Iran Mine House earlier said the country needed an annual 4.5 million metric tons of coal concentrate.

A serious challenge faced by the coal producers is the large amount of coal imports. While China, as one of the biggest importers of coal, has imposed protective tariffs on imported coal, Iran’s market has been filled to the brim with Australian and Indonesian coal concentrate and coke.