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Anjali Sharma Geeta Sumbali https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3893-3482

Abstract

Coal is an important non-renewable source of energy, which is being constantly used by mankind for various purposes. Coal mining activities affect the surrounding ecosystem by contaminating it with traces of toxic metals, which may accumulate and affect the diversity and abundance of biological communities. A number of microorganisms, such as, filamentous fungi, yeasts and bacteria are known to degrade coal by their enzymatic action and use it as the sole source of carbon. In addition, the indoor environments of coal mines possess bioaerosols, which may include living or dead allergens, pathogenic or non-pathogenic bacteria, fungi, viruses, mycotoxins, bacterial endotoxins, peptidoglycans, etc., that may cause skin, respiratory tract and other health problems. This article throws light on the impact of coal mining on the surrounding ecosystem, degradation of coal by the microbial inhabitants and their effects on the health of miners.

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Keywords

Coal mines, Coal spoils, Microflora, Ecobiology, Microbial degradation, Miners health

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Sharma, A., & Sumbali, G. (2019). Ecobiology of coal mines and spoils. Journal of Applied and Natural Science, 11(3), 624-631. https://doi.org/10.31018/jans.v11i3.2130
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