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Contains background information on the chemical and physical properties of coal--its nature, origins, various types and classification on a global basis. Highlights currently known geographical distribution of coals, their ages, recent production figures and major exporter countries. Essential exploration techniques and procedures, together with standards of geological practice, are described. The geologist's role in data collection, sampling, the calculation of resources/reserves, geotechnical studies as well as the preparation of geological reports are examined.