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Publication Abstract

Coal and Water Resources for Coal Conversion in Illinois Smith, William H., and John B. Stall, 1975  Illinois State Water Survey, Champaign, IL,  ISWS COOP-4    Full Text Available

Illinois has enormous reserves of coal and water. Nearly 100 billion tons of coal have been mapped in the two thickest and most extensive seams in the state, and numerous potential areas having sufficient water to supply one or more coal conversion plants have been evaluated and mapped. These resources of coal and water are sufficient to supply raw materials for many coal conversion plants that could provide synthetic fuels to help meet the rapidly expanding need for new energy sources in the Midwest and the eastern United States.

The report provides an up-to-date assessment of the state's most promising resources of coal and water. Three large maps included in the report show the geographic distribution of the coal and water. Supplementary maps and tables provide the fundamental information on coal and water resources that will be needed by the government agencies and private industries ultimately responsible for decisions regarding the siting of coal conversion facilities.

Remaining in-place reserves 42 or more inches thick total 59 billion tons for the Herrin (No. 6) Coal and 38 billion tons for the Harrisburg-Springfield (No. 5) Coal. In addition, reserves of the Harrisburg- Springfield and Herrin Coals that are less than 42 inches thick plus reserves in other Illinois coal seams total about 64 billion tons. The total reserves, therefore, constitute the largest reserves of bituminous coal in any state in the nation. The importance of these reserves is increased by the fact that 56 percent of the Herrin mapped for this report is 6 feet or more thick and 47 percent of the mapped Harrisburg-Springfield is 5 feet or more thick.

The report also locates sources of water capable of producing the 6 to 72 million gallons per day estimated to be required by coal conversion plants. The abundant reserves of coal and water documented in the report can support a synthetic fuels industry in Illinois large enough to contribute significantly to the energy needs not only of Illinois but of the surrounding regions.



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