Geologic Distribution: Manganese may be organically bound in coal, but is minor in high rank coals like those in West Virginia 1,2. Manganese may be predominantly in carbonate minerals in some coals 1,2. Also, Mn is probably within clay minerals and minor amounts in pyrite 1,3. Manganese averaged 21.29 ppm on a whole coal basis in West Virginia coals and statistically correlated very poorly with ash yield and did not correlate with total sulfur, pyritic sulfur or other trace elements. The element was abundant and erratic in distribution in coals of the Upper Pennsylvanian, and coals of the Middle and Lower Pennsylvanian were homogeneously low in manganese content.
Economic Impact: High manganese in coal and adjacent rocks may seriously economically impact coal mining. Manganese is important in steel alloys, in glass making and permanganate is a strong oxidizer used in laboratories and medicine 4.
Environmental Impact: Though Mn is one of the Title III Hazardous Air Pollutant elements there are no reported health or environmental problems with Mn in coal mining and utilization 1. Manganese released during and after coal mining is mainly an aesthetic pollutant and an indicator of mining's effect on ground and surface water.
1. Swaine, D.J., (1990)
2. Brown, H.R. and Swaine, D.J., (1964)
3. Finkelman, R.B., (1981)
4. CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics
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