THE NEW ECONOMY025
" "CONSIDER TRADITIONAL COAL MINING AND THE MASSIVECOST IT CARRIES.INSTEAD, UCG HAS THE BENEFITSOF A LOWER FOOTPRINT026CLEAN COAL TECHNOLOGYalternative energy source that produces synthesis gas,primarily a mix of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, forcleaner electricity generation, diesel and jet fuelproduction, as well as a host of other products likelubricants and fertilisers.A number of factors make the use of UCG for cleanerenergy solutions a compelling technology. UCG usesdeep, sub-economic, underground coal, without everremoving it from the ground and converts it to a gas.Consider traditional coal mining and aboveground coalgasification and the massive environmental cost theycarry. Instead, UCG has the benefits of a lower carbonand environmental footprint, with lower costs.Globally, coal will continue to fuel nations. UCG,however, uses coal in a cleaner and smarter way. For astart, there is no need to remove the coal from theground. This eliminates environmental concerns, suchSOURCE: LINC ENERGY LTD, 2009SOURCE: BP STATISTICAL REVIEW OF WORLD ENERGY 2006as large scale soil and rock disturbance, and dust, ashand slag. The use of UCG also reduces visual impact,risks of surface water contamination, and the use ofwater as UCG does not dewater the coal seam.Additionally, there is no need for a coal preparationplant or any coal handling infrastructure, and there isno need for any aboveground gasification infrastructure.Compared with traditional coal mining or abovegroundgasification, UCG carries a lower land use and carbonfootprint, whilst still optimising energy extraction.Importantly, the land used for UCG can be returned to its former use once the coal seam beneath isexhausted. There are even indications that agriculturalactivities such as grazing can still occur whilst UCGtakes place below the surface. UCG also has a numberof safety benefits. There is no blasting, use of heavyequipment, or hazards associated with traditional opencut or underground mining.