For much of the southern third of the map area a reasonable exploration database exists and some 46 million tones of coal have been mined in the area; the balance of the mapsheet area has only been superficially examined from a coal resource/exploration point of view. Additional coal quality data needs to be collected and detailed stratigraphic and/or structural studies are needed in the less explored areas.
The work by Langenberg et al (1987), in the southeastern part of map area, presents the complex geology of the region and demonstrates how structural studies and detailed mapping provides the significant perspective necessary for evaluation of coal resources in the Mountain Region. Similar studies are needed in the other areas mapped as Luscar Group on the map as there is potential for both structurally thickened and ''hidden'' coal resources. The rank of the Luscar Group coals varies from low to medium volatile bituminous.
The presence of thick coals of low to medium volatile bituminous rank and potential of structural trapping could indicate the area has potential for coalbed methane resources. Many of the areas between the Luscar Group, shown as blank (white) on the accompanying map, RCM5, are synclines, often faulted, with Luscar sediments at depth. Additional work is required to establish and evaluate coalbed methane resources in the area. To date, only 6 oil or gas wells have been drilled within the study area.
The northeast segment of the mapsheet should also be considered for it's coal potential. The Wapiti Group contains the Cutbank coal measure and (possibly), the Kakwa coal measure. The coal has a rank of high volatile bituminous C. Consideration of these coals for coalbed methane potential, while (probably) not as high as the Luscar Group coals, should not be excluded. For most of the remaining map area, little data is available and the coal development potential is somewhat uncertain.
Richardson, R.J.H., Langenberg, C.W., Chao, D.K., Fietz, D.W. and Dawson, M. (1991): Alberta Geological Survey - coal geology: coal compilation project - Copton Creek: NTS 83L/3; Alberta Research Council, ARC/AGS OFR 1991-09, 305 p.