In India, coal is the primary source of commercial energy. It is used as fuel in industries, thermal power stations and also for domestic purposes. Unfortunately, the bulk of the Indian coal reserves are of rather poor quality. India meets part of its coking coal requirements through import.


Coal in India occurs in two important types of coal fields. They are the Gondwana coal fields and Tertiary coal fields. Out of the total coal reserves and production in india, Gondwna coal fields contribute 98% and the rest 2% is produced by tertiary coal fields.

The Gondwana coal fields are located in the sedimentary rock systems of lower Gondwana Age. They are distributed chiefly in the river velleys of the Damodar (Jharkhand - West Bengal); the Son (Madhya Pradesh–Chhatisgarh); the Mahanadi (Orissa), the Godavari (Andhra Pradesh) and the Wardha (Maharashtra). Tertiary coalfields occur in the extra-peninsular areas which include Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir and Sikkim. Besides lignite or brown coal are found in coastal areas of Tamil Nadu, Gujarat and in land basins of Rajasthan.