Coal has been used by blacksmiths for as long as people remembered. They use it to make objects of iron and steel. There were a few open top quarries in the west where coal was found close to the surface and dug up to be sold to the blacksmiths.
But with the start of the glorious new age of steam, it became clear that coal was a much better fuel source than wood. Wood burned to cold, and there were only so many trees. Entire forests had been cut down for fuel, but they grew back too slow. So coal is the best fuel to power the Kingdom into the future.
Quarries and mines
The old open top quarries were not capable of delivering enough coal to feed all the boilers. So they transferred to mining. Only digging out the coal, not removing any soil, following the veins into the ground, tunneling after it.
All along the west of the Kingdom mines have opened, and the people in those areas are lucky to be able to work in such an important industry, which is bettering the nation. To ensure there are enough people to man the mines, the mining companies pay a bonus to every miner who has a child, and if their son joins the mining company as an apprentice at age twelve, the miner doesn't have to pay that bonus back!
There are two qualities of coal mined, boiler coal, and iron coal. Boiler coal, as its name suggests, is best to burn in a boiler. It produces the most heat for the amount of coal. Iron coal burns a bit hotter, but requires more coal for the same amount of heat. It is, however, ideal to be used to make steel.
It's always a glorious sight when you see the funnels and smoke stacks emitting the dark grey and black clouds that come with burning coal. It reminds one of the glory of the Kingdom and the power of steam!
Not all coal comes in nice fist sized lumps, tiny bits and dust is also collected and mixed with sticky liquids, then compressed into blocks and dried. These blocks have an inconsistent burning rate and temperature, but they are cheap.
Alot of mines use the pebble size chunks of coal themselves to run their own boiler.
The biggest mine is the Kist Mine, its tunnels spread for miles, and it produces one of the best qualities of boiler coal.
The Kist Mining Company is owned by the Baron of Kist, as the mine originated in his barony. It now spreads out far beyond the barronies borders.
The Kist mine was the first to produce one million ton of coal in a year! The mine employs twenty thousand workers. Whom are all lucky to be working for such a good company.