U.S. Department of the Interior

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Mid-Continent Region
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Louisiana's estimated 1.0 billion tons of coal reserves consist entirely of lignite. The deposits are located in the northwest part of the State, a moist, temperate region with highly erodible soils. Lignite was recognized in Louisiana as early as 1812. The first documented use occurred at the Confederate arsenal near Shreveport during the Civil War. By the late 1800s, its use by blacksmiths, steamboats, and railroads was common.

Permitted coal production in the State began at the Dolet Hills Lignite Mine in September 1985. This is a mine-mouth operation that uses a seven-mile-long conveyor to transport lignite to the power plant. A second permitted surface operation, the Oxbow Lignite Mine, began production in 1989, transporting its production by truck to the same power plant. In 2012, a third surface mine in Natchitoches Parish was permitted. The lignite produced at the newest mine is transported to the existing activated carbon production facility near Armistead, Louisiana.

  • Regulation and Reclamation

    • The Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, Office of Conservation has responsibility for SMCRA activities related to surface coal mining (Title V) and responsibility for SMCRA activities related to abandoned coal mines (Title IV) in the State of Louisiana.

  • State Contacts

  • Grants

    • Louisiana grant reports and related documents are contained in the official grant file maintained at the:

      Mid-Continent Region
      501 Belle Street, Suite 215
      Alton, IL 62002

      Telephone: (618) 463-6460
      Fax: (618) 463-6470

      They can be reviewed during normal business hours. Alternatively, these documents can be requested through the Birmingham Field Office and a copy of the grant file will be made available. The copy may be requested in paper or electronic format.

  • Oversight

    • What is Oversight?

      OSMRE defines "oversight", as the "process of evaluating and assisting states [and tribes] in the administration, implementation, and maintenance of approved programs. In collaboration with each state/tribe, OSMRE develops a Performance Agreement/Evaluation Plan tailored to the unique conditions of each state/tribe program. Performance Agreements/Evaluation Plans between OSM and the states establish how oversight is conducted during each evaluation year.

      Learn more about OSMRE's National Oversight Program.

      Oversight Documents

      To view oversight documents visit, OSMRE's REG-8 Oversight Database:

Page Last Modified/Reviewed: 5/20/14

Mid-Continent Region OSM, 501 Belle St., Suite 216, Alton, IL 62002
(618) 463-6460 | FAX: (618) 463-6470 | Email:

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