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Home > Alberta's Resource Inventory > Hydrocarbons > Coal > Coal Characteristics > Coal in Alberta

Resource Inventory

Coal in Alberta

Luscar Coal MineAlberta is the largest producer of coal in Canada, and the home of 70 percent of Canada's coal reserves. The province covers the area of many coal deposits, making Alberta's potential for coal development enormous. The province's total coal resources are estimated at 2.6 billion tonnes, and contain nearly twice the energy of all other non-renewable energy resources in Alberta, including oil, natural gas and oilsands. Estimates suggest that approximately 800 billion tonnes of the coal reserves are recoverable (790 billion of sub-bituminous coal and 10 billion of bituminous metallurgical and thermal coal).

There are 12 major active coal mining operations in the province. Seven of these are located in the parkland and grassland natural regions, and five are located in the foothills and mountains of west central Alberta. 

Alberta coal is use to generate electricity in the production of primary iron and steel, and is an important source of energy for industrial processes, such as cement manufacturing. Export markets for Alberta coal include Ontario, British Columbia, Japan, South Korea, Brazil and Western Europe.

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