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View news from EPA initiatives and other domestic and international activities related to coal mine methane. To receive the next Coalbed Methane News by email, join the CMOP Network.

Coalbed Methane News

October 2014

First Mine Methane Project Listed with ARB

The California Air Resources Boards (ARB) announced in early September that the first coal mine methane capture offset project had applied for the conversion of 80,766 credits from Climate Reserve Tonnes (CRTs) to ARB offset credits (ARBOCs) through the early action mechanism. ARBOCs can be used by firms with emissions covered under the cap-and-trade program to account for up to 8 percent of their obligations in any given compliance year.

The VAMOX Demonstration Project at JWR Shaft No. 4-9 was first listed with the Climate Action Reserve (CAR) in January 2010 as CAR577. The CAR listing states that the ‘project activity involves the use of a 30,000 scfm VAMOX® regenerative thermal oxidation demonstration unit to destroy a portion of the GHG emissions from JWR’s shaft No. 4-9′. Four other mine methane projects have been listed with CAR and are expected to be eligible for early action. Of these, two – Solvay Chemicals’ Green River Trona Mine and Verdeo Sindicatum’s Verdeo McElroy VAM Abatement Project – have earned a combined 449,077 CRTs, and could potentially look to list for ARBOC conversion. In addition, Verified Carbon Standard (VCS) mine methane projects are also eligible for the California offset program. Mine methane capture was approved as the fifth project type in California cap and trade at the Board meeting in April, and was officially introduced on July 1 .

United States

Source: California Carbon.info Exit EPA

Federal Judge Halts West Elk Expansion

A Federal District Judge has overturned the approval of Arch Coal’s expansion of its coal mining lease at the West Elk Mine in Colorado, originally approved in 2012 by the Forest Service and BLM. Judge R. Brooke Jackson's ruling hinged on a view that the USFS and BLM had not adequately considered the effects of coal-fired electric generation on global warming. The ruling also outlaws construction work for methane vent bore holes. The expansion of the West Elk Mine has been the subject of numerous lawsuits from environmental groups going back to 2008.

Source: Delta County Independent Exit EPA

Generating Electricity at Yorkshire's Abandoned Mines

UK

Alkane Energy, an independent U.K. power generator, has added a further three closed coal mines to its portfolio of sites that can generate electricity from abandoned mine methane. The three mines are situated in the Yorkshire coalfields, which are some of the gassiest in the country. The Maltby mine near Rotherham has the potential to generate 10MW, the Prince of Wales colliery in Wakefield, 2MW, and the Markham Main mine at Doncaster, could generate up to 4MW, depending on the results of current drilling to test methane levels.

Source: Yorkshire Post Exit EPA

Draft Emissions Reduction Fund Methods Released for Public Consultation

Australia

The first draft emissions reduction methods for projects under the Emissions Reduction Fund were released for public consultation on 5, September 2014. The Emissions Reduction Fund is the centerpiece of the Australian Government's efforts to tackle climate change. Emissions reduction methods set out the rules for estimating emissions reductions from proposed activities. The three draft methods cover projects for landfill gas recovery, alternative waste treatment and cleaning up emissions from coal mining. These areas were identified as key priorities for method development in consultation with industry.

The price-parity approval would be effective for three CBM operators, Great Eastern Energy, Essar Oil and ONGC Limited. For Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), approval has been withheld while the government seeks additional information from the company.

Source: Australian Ministry for the Environment Exit EPA

The coal mining draft method determination: http://www.environment.gov.au/climate-change/emissions-reduction-fund/methods Exit EPA

Events

Upcoming Events

2014 Pittsburgh Coal Conference
6 - 9 October 2014
Pittsburgh, PA
Website: www.engineering.pitt.edu/PCC.aspx?id=2147488856 Exit EPA

Global Methane Initiative (GMI) Coal Subcommittee Meeting
22 October 2014
Geneva, Switzerland
Website: www.globalmethane.org/news-events/event_detailsByEventId.aspx?eventId=443 Exit EPA

9th Session of the UNECE Group of Experts on CMM
23 October 2014
Geneva, Switzerland
Website: www.unece.org/energy/coalmine/meetings.html Exit EPA

7th International Symposium on Non-CO2 Greenhouse Gases
5-7 November 2014
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Website: http://ncgg.info/ Exit EPA

2014 U.S. Coal Mine Methane Conference
18-20 November 2014
Pittsburg, PA, USA
Website: http://www.cmm2014usconference.com/ Exit EPA
Register Now!

Visit Workshops/Conferences for more >>
Publications

Recently Released Publications

Legal and Regulatory Status of CMM Ownership in Key Countries: Considerations for Decision Makers
EPA CMOP, July 2014 (PDF, 49 pp, 697KB)

Scale Effect of Ceramic Foam Burner on the Combustion Characteristics of Low-Concentration Coal Mine Methane
H.Dai and B.Lin, September 8, 2014.
Energy Fuels article, American Chemical Society

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