BLM-New Mexico manages Federal coal leasing in New Mexico and Oklahoma, as well as having Trust responsibility for overseeing certain aspects of coal development on Navajo Nation lands in New Mexico.

New Mexico

New Mexico Coal FieldsNew Mexico contains about 3% of estimated U.S. recoverable coal reserves at producing mines, and is ranked 12th in U.S. production, for a total of 22.5 million tons produced in 2012.  Coal mining and coal mine reclamation provide over 2,800 jobs in New Mexico, and generates a payroll of about $246 million. As of 2013, there are four producing coal mines in New Mexico, one on mainly Federal lands, one on Navajo tribal lands, and two on mainly private lands.  All of the existing mines are located in the San Juan Basin.

Coal mined in New Mexico is either burned in the State or shipped by rail to Arizona for power generation. Coal fired power plants supply about 70 percent of New Mexico’s electricity generation.

In 2012, production from Federal leases in New Mexico amounted to about 4.3 million tons and generated $12.5 million in rents and royalties.  There are 12 Federal coal leases in New Mexico, covering about 26,000 acres.  Three of the leases are associated with two producing mines.  The remainder is at closed mines that are undergoing reclamation, or are being held for access to an adjacent producing mine.


Oklahoma Coal FieldsOklahoma contains about 0.1% of the estimated U.S. recoverable coal reserves at producing mines. It ranks 22nd in U.S. production, for a total of 1.05 million tons produced in 2012. Coal mining provides about 550 jobs in Oklahoma, and generates a payroll of $47 million. In 2012, there were seven producing coal mines in Oklahoma.

About 60 percent of the coal mined in Oklahoma is used in lime and cement kilns in Oklahoma and surrounding states. The remainder is used for electricity generation at one power plant in Oklahoma, and one in Missouri.

In 2012, production from Federal leases in Oklahoma amounted to about 487,000 tons and generated $838,000 in rents and royalties. There are nine Federal leases in Oklahoma, covering about 17,000 acres. Two of the leases are in production, one is under development, and the remainder is inactive.

Coal Lease Issued

On March 10, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued a 640-acre coal lease to develop about 9.2 million tons of recoverable coal adjacent to the El Segundo Mine in McKinley County, New Mexico. It sold for $2.3 million to Peabody Natural Resources Company.

News Release

New Mexico Coal Lease Sales

For More Information

Bureau of Land Management

Other Federal Agencies

New Mexico State Agencies

Oklahoma State Agencies