Why is Coal Not Classified as a Mineral?

By Esha Dhawan|Updated : August 30th, 2022

Did you know that coal is not classified as a mineral? This is because minerals are naturally occurring compounds that have a defined chemical composition. However, coal does not qualify to be a mineral as it is made up of atoms of elements and is generated from dead plant matter. Minerals are not formed from living things like plants and animals. They are well-defined solid chemical substances that occur naturally in a pure form.


Coal is not classified as a mineral because it is made of dead plants and is not well-defined

Coal is a brownish-black flammable and sedimentary rock that is found in the form of seams. It is mainly made up of carbon with different proportions of elements like hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur. Coal is generated when the dead plant matter decays and is transformed into coal over a million years by the pressure and heat of burial.


Why is Coal Not Classified as a Mineral?

The reason why is coal not classified as a mineral is that coal is made up of atoms generated from dead plants. Unlike minerals, coal does not have a well-defined structure and is mostly made of carbon with other elements in different proportions.


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