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Kentucky Coal Resource Information

This website contains data and maps pertaining to 16 of Kentucky’s most productive coal beds. In 2012-13, remaining coal resources greater than 28 inches thick were estimated for these beds by subtracting mined areas from previously established estimates of original coal resources. Significant resources less than 28 inches thick remain in these beds, but are generally not economically recoverable, and therefore are not tabulated in remaining resource tables. However, the extent of these thinner resources are shown on the original resource maps for each coal bed. Also, other coal beds of lesser magnitude occur in the state but could not be included in this study due to time constraints. As such, the data presented here are minimum estimates of remaining coal.

Total resources greater than 28 inches thick for the 16 beds are estimated to be 37 billion tons. As of 2012, 25.5 billion tons, or 68% of the original resource remain.

The purpose of the website is to show the magnitude and geographic distribution of coal resources with potential for future development. Estimates of remaining coal shown on this site are believed to be an available resource, but no analysis has been done to determine whether the deposits are economically recoverable under specific market conditions or if there may be other restrictions to mining. Previous studies of coal availability and recoverability suggest that between 20 percent and 50 percent of remaining coal may be economically recoverable.

Please read "How to use this website" below before beginning.

Download and view a Powerpoint presentation about this website from the 2014 Kentucky GIS Conference, presented by Doug Curl: Link to Powerpoint.

Click the "Start Here" menu tab below to begin...
View coal resource information for a county: 
(* counties are those with available coal bed resource estimates)

Sources of data for determining original coal resources are measurements of coal bed thickness from outcrops, mines, and drill holes on file at KGS. Isopach maps of total coal thickness (less partings) were prepared by posting the data on base maps and hand contouring lines of equal thickness in 14-in increments. Coal bed outcrop extents for each bed were digitized from 1:24,000-scale geologic quadrangle maps, and intersected with coal thickness maps and county boundaries to create final resource maps. Tonnages for each resource area were calculated using the average density conversion of 1,800 tons per acre/foot of coal.

Mined areas were downloaded from the Kentucky Mine Map Information System in May 2012.  Mine polygons were buffered 200 ft to eliminate interior, unmined barrier pillars and to establish a safety barrier surrounding each mine. Each modified mine extent layer was then intersected with the original coal resource map to identify areas of remaining coal. 

This website has two frames. The left hand frame contains coal resource information organized in tabs and tools for visualizing and downloading related data of interest. The right-hand frame contains a scalable map to view the geographic location of coal deposits and the data used to characterize them.

The site has two modes of inquiry - all data for a county or all data for a single coal bed. First, click the "Start Here: Select by County or Coal Bed" tab above to view data by county or by coal bed. For information about coal resources for a single county, click the "Resources by County" button and select the county of interest from the pulldown menu. The map will zoom to the extent of the selected county and display active surface and underground coal mines. Coal resource information is provided for all beds assessed within that county.

For information about a single coal bed in all counties, click the "Resources by Coal Bed" button and select one of the beds from the pulldown menu. The map will zoom to the full extent of the bed showing original coal resources by thickness categories, mined out areas, and locations of measurement data.

Map Controls

To zoom in or out use the tools on the right side of the map or rotate the roller ball on the mouse. To pan the map, click and hold the left mouse button and move in the direction you want the map to move.

To identify features on the map, click the left mouse button with the pointer over the feature. If more than one feature is identified, the info dialog will show (1 of N) in its title bar. To see each feature's information, click the right or left arrow in the title bar. As the page changes, the associated feature will be highlighted on the map.

Click the Map Setup button to turn on or off selected layers or to change the transparency of a layer. Click Switch Basemap to change the style of the base. This tab also provides print services. To hide the Map Setup dialog, click its title bar.

Click the Legend button to see an explanation of symbols that are used on the current map display.

This map displays sites, such as power plants and preparation facilities from the Kentucky Energy Infrastructure map service. For complete information about those sites, a link to that service is provided on the Map Setup window.

Resource Estimates Tab

This tab shows remaining resources by coal bed and thickness category.

County View. The "county" table can be configured to show only bed totals or sub-totals by thickness category. To view the map extent of any resource category, click on the corresponding row in the table. To display the original resource map for any bed, click the radio button next to a row for that bed. Use the transparency control to adjust the remaining resource areas to view the underlying original resource layer. Click "Resource Chart" to view a pie chart of the single county tabular data. To see the distribution of remaining resources for all beds, click the checkbox next to "Display Extent of Estimated Remaining Resources by Thickness (for assessed coals)".

Bed View. The "bed" table shows resources by thickness category for all counties containing the selected coal. Total remaining resources are shown above the resource table. To zoom to a single county, click the row in the table with that county name. To view a stacked bar chart of the bed resource data click Resource Chart.

Production Data Tab

Annual coal production data were compiled from the Kentucky Office of Mine Safety and Licensing annual reports. Tables in this tab only show total production by county and mine type since 1970. To search all historical coal production click the link above the displayed graphs. To obtain production from specific coal mines, select the "Resources by Coal Bed" view, choose the appropriate coal, and click on a mine area. On the pop-up "info" dialog, click on the "Report" item under Data Links. Click on "Maps" to access scanned mine maps for the mine.

Data Tab

This tab provides free downloads of all coal resource measurement data related to the map view. These data include thickness measurements, coal borehole data, and coal quality data. In "County" view, only records for the selected county and view extent will be returned. In "Bed" view, only records for the selected bed in the current view extent will be returned.

Publications Tab

This tab provides access to selected publication bibliographies for topics related to coal resources. Most of the titles can be downloaded from the KGS website, otherwise can be ordered for a nominal charge.

This work was performed by staff and students at the Kentucky Geological Survey. Funding for compiling coal information and assessing coal resources was supported, in part, by grants from the U.S. Geological Survey under the following programs:  National Coal Resource Data System Coop, Coal Availability and Recoverability, National Coal Quality Inventory, and National Coal Resource Assessment.

Select a county or coal bed from the Info tab ("Select by County or Coal Bed") and resources estimates will be displayed here.
Search for all Kentucky coal production data here (1790 - 2010):
This tab provides free downloads of all coal resource source data related to the map view. Click a button below to view and download borehole, thickness, or quality data for the current viewed extent of either the selected county or the selected bed:
Coal Boreholes
Coal Thickness
Coal Quality
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    Coal Codes Table
    Eastern Kentucky Coalfield
    yellow highlighted rows are the available coal beds on this map service - click a row to make a selection
    KRC Code
    Selection Name
    District Names
    Northeast Kentucky
    Licking River
    southwest KY
    Big Sandy
    southeast KY
    Pine Mountain (SW)Pine Mountain (NE)West VirginiaVirginia
    Upper Cumberland
    11Princess No.7 (PR7) Hazard No.13 (H13)     
    15Princess No.6 (PR6) Hazard No.12 (H12)     
    24Princess No.5 (PR5)Skyline (SKY) Richardson (RCH)   
    26   Clarion (CLR)    
    30 Upper Tiptop (TPT)      
    32 Middle Tiptop (TPT)      
    34Princess No.4 (PR4)Tiptop (TPT)Hazard No.10 (H10)     
    38  Hazard No.9 rider (H9R)     
    40Broas (BRS)Hindman (HND)Hazard No.9 (HZ9)Broas (BRS) Braden MountainStockton (STK) 
    47Upper Princess No.3 (PR3)Francis (FRN)Hazard No.8 (HZ8)Upper Peach Orchard (UPO) Upper High Splint (HSP)Upper Coalburg (CBG)Virginia No.13 (V13)
    50  Hazard No.7 rider (HZ7)Middle Peach Orchard (MPO)  Middle Coalburg (CBG) 
    55Lower Princess No.3 (PR3)OakleyHazard No.7 (HZ7)Lower Peach Orchard (LPO) High Splint (HSP)Lower Coalburg (CBG)Virginia No.12 (V12)
    57     Upper Middle Splint Virginia No.11 1/2
    65 Hazard (HZD)Hazard No.5A (H5A)Leatherwood (LTH)Red SpringsLow Splint (LSP)Winifrede (WIN)Virginia No.11 (V11)
    70 Haddix (HDX)      
    75 Lower Haddix (HDX)      
    85Taylor (TLR) Copland (COP)Taylor (TLR)SharpLimestone Upper Parsons (PAR)
    87Lower Taylor (TLR)   Lower Sharp  Parsons (PAR)
    94  Hamlin (HML)Hamlin (HML)HignitePardee Virginia No.10 (V10)
    95  Lower Hamlin (HML)Lower Hamlin (HML)Lower HigniteLower Pardee  
    104     Upper Wax  
    105     Wax Virginia No.9 (VA9)
    115     Smith  
    Fire Clay rider
     Fire Clay rider (FCR)Hazard No.4 rider (H4R)Fire Clay rider (FCR)Big MaryWallins Creek riderUpper Chilton (CHA)Virginia No.8 (VA8)
    Fire Clay
     Fire Clay (FCL)Hazard No.4 (HZ4)Fire Clay (FCL)Dean (DEA)Wallins Creek ("A") (WCK)Chilton (CHL)Virginia No.7 (VA7)
    140 Little Fire Clay      
    145 Upper Whitesburg (UWB) Upper Whitesburg (UWB)Upper PioneerWallins B Virginia No.6 (VA6)
    150 Middle Whitesburg Middle Whitesburg Stray No.2  
    155 Lower Whitesburg (LWB) Lower Whitesburg (LWB) Stray No.3Hernshaw (HRN) 
    Gun CreekAmburgy (AMB)Cannel CityWilliamson (WLM)Poplar LickCreech ("F") (CRH)  
    173 Lower Amburgy (AMB)  SterlingLower Creech ("E") (CRH)  
    179   Upper Elkhorn No.3 1/2 rider Upper "D"  
    180 NosbenUpper Elkhorn No.3 1/2 (U35)Upper Elkhorn No.3 1/2 (U35) "D"  
    185   Upper Elkhorn No.3 1/2 leader    
    Upper Elkhorn No.3 (upper)
      Upper Elkhorn No.3 rider (UE3)Upper Elkhorn No.3 rider (UE3)    
    Upper Elkhorn No.3 (lower)
    Little CaneyTom CooperUpper Elkhorn No.3 (UE3)Van Lear (VLR)Buckeye SpringsDarby ("C") (DBY)Cedar Grove (CDG)Taggart (TAG)
    207     Kellioka ("B") (KEL)  
    Upper Elkhorn No.2
     GrassyUpper Elkhorn No.2 (UE2)Upper Alma (ALM)Upper MingoUpper Harlan (HAR) Collier
    215 Jellico (JLL)Upper Elkhorn No.1 (UE1)Lower Alma (ALM)Lower MingoHarlan (HAR) Wilson (WIL)
    Lower Elkhorn
    HowardBlue Gem (BGM)Lower Elkhorn (LEK)Pond Creek (PDC)Rich MountainUpper Path Fork (UPF)No. 2 Gas (2GS)Imboden (IMB)
    226WheelersburgLittle Blue Gem (LBG) Powellton (POW) Lower Path Fork (LPF) Phoebe
    Zachariah (ZCHManchester (MAN)Lily (LLY)Bingham (BNG)Bennett's ForkHance (HNC)Matewan (MTW)Clintwood (CLN)
    260 Van Cleve Eagle (EGL)    
    262   Blair (BLR)    
       Millard (MIL)ChenoaMason (MSN) Glamorgan (GLM)
       Hagy (HGY)    
    Splash Dam
      Gray HawkSplash Dam (SPD)Split Seam (SPS)   
    290 BeattyvilleHalsey RoughElswickClear Fork   
    305 Stearns No.3      
    320 Stearns No.1 1/2      
    330 Stearns No.1      

    Western Kentucky Coalfield
    (bold names are used in selection list)
    KRC CodeDistrict Names
    Regional NameKentucky NameLocal Name
    525Lisman (LSM)  
    565CoiltownWestern Kentucky No.14 (W14) 
    580Baker (BKR)Western Kentucky No.13 (W13) 
    585ParadiseWestern Kentucky No.12 (W12) 
    590HerrinWestern Kentucky No.11 (W11) 
    600SpringfieldWestern Kentucky No.9 (WK9)Main Mulford
    610SurvantWestern Kentucky No.8 (WK8) 
    620DekovenWestern Kentucky No.7 (WK7) 
    625DavisWestern Kentucky No.6 (WK6) 
    650 Western Kentucky No.5 (WK5) 
    655ManningtonWestern Kentucky No.4 (WK4)