The need, opportunity and economic feasibility of large-scale commercial production of methane from coal seams is confirmed by the experience of developing methyl-coal fields in the United States, which occupy a leading position in the world in terms of the development of the “new gas industry.” Also, industrial production of methane from coal seams is conducted in Australia, Canada and China.
Favorable geological features and gas-bearing conditions of coal basins are an objective prerequisite for organising large-scale methane production as an independent mineral.
The need for the organisation of methanol-coal fields is due to the following factors: the presence of large-scale methane deposits in the coal basins in Australia; the presence of modern advanced efficient technologies for commercial production of methane from coal seams, widely used in recent years abroad; the presence in Australia of scientific and technical potential capable of coordinating and carrying out scientific research on this topic.
Among the regions in Australia that are not adequately supplied with gas fuel, a number of coal-mining regions could fully cover their gas needs through large-scale methane production from coal seams. In addition, the extraction and use of gas will improve the environmental situation in the coal-mining areas, reduce the gas hazard of coal mining in future mines and create new jobs in gas fields and gas processing plants.