Interim Energy and Natural Resources Minister Ali Rıza Alaboyun announced that $200 billion worth of lignite coal reserves have been detected by the General Directorate of Mineral Research and Exploration (MTA).
Explaining that lignite coal is mostly used as a fuel at thermal power stations, Alaboyun said the MTA General Directorate initiated research and exploration for lignite coal in 2005. He said in total an area of 1,531,617 meters has been drilled and 12 new lignite fields have been discovered out of which three have a high amount of reserves, which have been enhanced in two of the fields.
Three of the largest reserves are in Konya-Karapınar with 1.8 billion tons, Eskişehir-Alpu with 1.5 billion tones and Afyon-Dinar with 940 million tons of reserves, a total of 4.2 billion tons.
As for middle- and small-scale reserves, 7.3 billion tons of lignite coal reserves have been discovered within the last 10 years. "Together with these reserves, which are worth around $200 billion, Turkey's total lignite reserves, which were around 8.3 billion tons, increased 88 percent to 15.6 billion tons. Such an increase means $2.5 billion less in exports in fuel oil and natural gas," Alaboyun said. He added that they are targeting 250,000 meters of further drilling until the end of the year.
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