try); improved environmental protection (OSM, EPA, states, industry); improved resource recovery and mine productivity (DOE-FE, NSF, OSM, NIOSH, academic institutions, industry); and carbon sequestration resource characterization (USGS, DOE-FE, states). The total new funding to support these activities amounts to approximately $144 million per year (Table S.1).

SOCIETAL ISSUES

While coal mining benefits communities during the productive life of a mine, after mine closure there is the potential for adverse affects that may include land use, safety, infrastructure and community development, and sustainability issues. The key to maintaining healthy communities after cessation of mining is early and comprehensive planning that involves all stakeholders.

An aging workforce and a substantial shortage of technically trained personnel in the mining and minerals engineering disciplines pose a threat to projected scenarios that involve substantially increased coal production. Extramural funding by federal agencies to universities in support of research in earth sciences and engineering would assist in recruiting, retaining, and developing mining professionals. This extramural funding is expected to be supported by proposed increased funding to the federal agencies summarized in Table S.1.

TABLE S.1 Summary of FY 2005 and Proposed Additional Funding for Coal-Related R&D at Federal Agencies

 

FY 2005 Funding (million dollars)

Proposed New Funding (million dollars)

Total Proposed Funding (million dollars)

Resource and reserve assessments and characterization

10a

20a

30a

Improved mine worker health and safety

25

35

60

Environmental protection and reclamation

10

60

70

Improved mining productivity and resource optimization

1

29

30

Total

46

144

190

NOTE: All figures are in millions of dollars per year. FY 2005 figures are rounded to nearest million for easier comparison with proposed funding levels (unrounded figures for FY 2005 funding are presented in Table 7.2).

aAmounts do not include funding for the DOE Office of Fossil Energy’s Carbon Sequestration program, which supports a range of sequestration research and demonstration activities that include geologic sequestration site characterizations.



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