Kentucky Mining Institute

Coal Mining Reference Book
Sixth Edition, 2012

Books are written for many reasons. Some books are written for entertainment. Others are written to inform. This book, the Sixth Edition of The Coal Mining Reference Book, is designed to not only advance the reader’s knowledge of the coal industry, but also to advance the body of knowledge within the coal industry itself. First published in 1948 as a “Green” book, this book now known as the “Red Book” isdesigned to provide the reader with up-to-date information that will allow the reader to take the next step in the profession of coal mining.

Like other industries, coal mining has changed dramatically since 1948. New technologies and practices allow us, in the industry, to mine coal in a safer and more environmentally responsible manner. These technological changes go beyond the workplace to every facet of our daily life. New technology, whether designed for communication or some other purpose, seems to now reach the marketplace in a constant succession and greater speed. In many cases, from electronic book readers to electric cars, coal remains the literal ‘prime mover’ because it provides the cost-effective electricity that powers these technologies. From healthcare to education, from food preservation to manufacturing, our lives are made better and longer by electricity and its affordability due to domestic coal production. For generations to come, we will benefit from coal-fired electricity, especially here in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, where more than 90% of our electricity comes from coal.

The mining of coal is important work, and absolutely critical to our domestic energy supply and national security. I hope you recognize your work as a tremendous responsibility as well as a matter of great pride. Regardless of where you are located, I wish you continued success in your career and thank you for literally ‘keeping the lights on’ for all of us.

Bill Bissett, President
Kentucky Coal Associatio