Coalbed Methane Outreach Program (CMOP)
Working Cooperatively with Industry
CMOP works cooperatively with the coal mining industry to reduce CMM emissions. Learn more about U.S. efforts »
Methane emissions from coal mining and abandoned coal mines accounted for about 7% of total U.S. methane emissions in 2020.
Recovering and Using Methane
The recovery and use of CMM emissions have benefits for the local community and global environment. Learn more »
Tools & Resources
Support documents about CMOP are available. Learn more about tools and resources »
Get the latest information about CMOP resources and events related to mitigating methane emissions.
EPA's Coalbed Methane Outreach Program (CMOP) is a voluntary program with the goal of reducing methane emissions from coal mining activities.
Our mission is to promote the profitable recovery, utilization, and mitigation of coal mine methane (CMM), a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change when emitted into the atmosphere. Since 1994, we have cooperated with the coal mining sector in the United States to reduce CMM emissions. As of January 2023, EPA’s CMOP is aware of 25 coal mine methane projects at 16 active mines and 35 abandoned mine methane projects at 66 abandoned (closed) mines.
Coal mining activities release methane, which is stored in the cleats and micropores of coal, when coal-bearing seams are disturbed. In coal mines, methane is a mining hazard because it is explosive at certain concentrations and its accumulation can result in a mine atmosphere deficient in oxygen. When released, methane is a precursor to ground-level ozone, a harmful pollutant that can irritate the airways. In the atmosphere, methane is a powerful greenhouse gas that is more powerful than carbon dioxide. Technologies can help capture methane from coal mining before it is released and use it as an energy source.