Coal is more than just what naughty kids get in their stocking for Christmas, it is Wyoming's lifeblood. According to the Wyoming Mining Association, the Cowboy State has led the nation in coal production since 1986. The state produces 40% of our nation's supply of coal and shows no sign of stopping. The coal seams in the state are some of the largest in the world that are up to 250 feet thick. This photo found on Reddit shows one of the massive seams in Wyoming.

A coal seam in Wyoming. from r/pics

How much do you know about Wyoming coal? Here are some fun facts about coal from the Wyoming Mining Association and The Wyoming State Geological Survey.

  • There are 4 types of coal: Lignite, Sub-bituminous, Bituminous, and Anthracite.
  • The majority of coal mined in Wyoming is Sub-bituminous.
  • There are 16 coal mines in Wyoming.
  • The majority of coal yield is pulled from 11 mines with a majority of them in Campbell County.
  • Wyoming only has one underground coal mine located in Sweetwater County.
  • Most of the coal in Wyoming was formed between 50-58 million years ago.
  • Wyoming coal has a low sulfur content which makes it perfect use for power plants. It is considered clean burning by government standards.
  • Coal has several industrial uses besides providing power including insecticides, wood preservatives, and food flavoring.