China is a big place. The resources are large. The scale of everything is outsized.
And as has been well documented, its up and coming middle class is energy depended. Commendably, the Chinese government has prioritized renewable energy and it seems they are well on the way to leading the world.
Still, conventional energy is essential and will no doubt remain important for the foreseeable future. Relative to coal, natural gas has less of a CO2 ‘footprint’. Thus, methane extraction from coal has several benefits, some of them more obvious than others.
A new paper headed by Prof Yong Qin* (China University of Mining and Technology, Xuzhou) has just been published which reviews the coalbed methane (CBM) resources in China. The paper is part of a larger special issue on the coal geology of China published in the periodical International Geology Review. The paper covers the resources of CBM in China as well as addressing the possibility of production from ‘deep’ (generally greater than 1000 m) reservoirs. The geology of each CBM basin is also thoroughly covered with abundant references for the reader to assess when more detail is needed.
The special volume of papers is a part of a larger review of coal geology in China, which contains summaries on coal production, basin settings, health impacts, coal combustion products and other articles. Anyone wanting a good general overview of all things coal in China, needs to check out this volume (https://www.tandfonline.com/toc/tigr20/60/5-6?
* Qin, Y., Moore, T.A., Shen, J., Yang, Z., Shen, Y., Wang, G., 2018. Resources and geology of coalbed methane in China: a review. International Geology Review 60, 777-812, https://doi.org/10.1080/00206814.2017.1408034