As one of the most important fossil fuels around, coal takes around 300 million years to come about during a process known as coalification. In fact, there are many different varieties of coal that can be repurposed for a range of different uses depending where in its life cycle it is when it is excavated. Here at Pearson Fuels, we supply house coal on a regular basis and in this blog we are going to go over the life cycle of coal…


Thought of as the predecessor of coal, peat is a soft material that is made up of decaying vegetation matter. Whilst it isn’t as effective as coal at generating power and heat due to its high moisture levels, its is very effective at cleaning up fuel and oil spills.


The first stage of coal is known as lignite and is often brown in colour. It has a high moisture content of around 45% which makes it the lowest rank of coal and reserves it primarily for generating electric power.


Coal that isn’t quite lignite but isn’t yet bituminous is known as sub-bituminous coal and is primarily used to generate steam electric power. It contains much less sulphur than lignite and it often found near the surface during mining, making it a relatively cost effective coal to source.


Characterised by its shiny black appearance, bituminous coal is the stage of coal that is used as house coal in order to light fireplaces and stoves. With this said, it is also used during steel production in order to creating coking coal.


As the most brittle type of coal, anthracite produces an incredibly hot blue flame when it is burned. In fact, it is thought to be the cleanest coal around and can sometimes be used instead of bituminous coal in residential properties. With this said, it is a slow burning coal that struggles to hold a flame because it has a high density.

As it stands, our remaining supplies of coal are said to be able to last anywhere between 150 and 200 years at current consumption rates. Luckily, there are still great sources of peat and lignite that can be found and repurposed. If you’re looking for a house coal supplier, get in contact with the best coal merchants around and speak to a member of the Pearson Fuels team today!