Govt sets this year’s coal production target at 6.9m tons

The government is targeting to produce around 6.9 million tons of coal during the current fiscal year aimed at efficiently meeting domestic energy needs.

Previous year’s production target was 3.8 million tons, an energy sector official told APP,

“This target was met 100%,” he said.

Cumulatively, imported and local coal accounts for a 19.2% share of the country’s energy mix requirement.

Commenting on coal deposits found near Badin and elsewhere in southern Sindh, the official said geological experts were in process of compiling a technical report based on the initial analysis of samples collected from the field.

“Analysis shows the quality of coal is lignite, comparable with the quality of Thar coal,” he said, adding that the project was prepared and being executed to discover other coal in Badin and surrounding areas.

He said that the thickness of coal seams ranges between 17 centimeters and 2.3 meters, adding that a total of 78 coal seams had been found with a cumulative thickness of 52.01 meters.

“One sample from each seam was taken for chemical analysis. The chemical analysis of 78 coal samples has been completed at the GSP’s [Geological Survey of Pakistan) chemical laboratory in Karachi.”

Generally, he said, the coal was encountered below a depth of 270 meters in the Bara Formation of Paleocene age.

Through drilling activities, around 2,500 square kilometers of the unexplored area has been thoroughly examined and the presence of coal in Badin and adjoining areas was confirmed.

The official said that the explored block had been assessed to contain 33.893 million tons proven, 305.082 million tons indicated and 4,219.49 million tons inferred coal reserves.

Coal is primarily classified into four major categories, lignite, sub-bituminous, bituminous and anthracite.

He said efforts were being made for exploring potential high-quality tertiary coal deposits in the central Salt Range in Punjab.

According to a report, geological investigations showed that there were 186 billion tons of coal reserves across the country, which could be used as a primary and inexpensive source for power generation.

“More than 184 billion tons deposits are located in Sindh alone, with Thar coalfield being the largest followed by Thatta-Sonda, Lakhra, and Jhimpir. The coal is lignite to lignite-A to sub-bituminous B and C in character with an average heating value of 6,000 BTU/lb.”



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