Mining Intelligence and News
United States

Navajo Mine

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Mine TypeOpen Pit
  • Coal (thermal)
Mining Method
  • Dragline
  • Truck & Shovel / Loader
Production Start... Lock
SnapshotBituminous coal is mined at the Navajo Mine.


Navajo Transitional Energy Company, LLC (operator) 100 % Indirect
Navajo Transitional Energy Company, wholly owned by the Navajo Nation, owns the Navajo Mine.

Deposit type

  • Sedimentary


The Navajo Tribal Coal Lease is located on the western flank of the San Juan Structural Basin in northwestern San Juan County approximately 15 miles southwest of Farmington, New Mexico. This basin is an asymmetric, structural basin with a northwest trending axis parallel to the Hogback Monocline in northwest New Mexico. The basin is bounded on the northwest by the Hogback Monocline and on the north by the San Juan Uplift. The eastern rim is formed by the Brazos Uplift and the Nacimiento Uplift. The Zuni Uplift and the Chaco Slope form the southern margin of the basin while the Defiance Uplift and Four Corners Platform complete the northwestern basin rim. The San Juan Watershed lies on the eastern edge of the Colorado Plateau and extends from northwestern New Mexico into portions of northeastern Arizona along the New Mexico/Arizona border, southwestern Colorado, and the southeastern most corner of Utah. The San Juan Watershed is approximately 140 miles wide by 200 miles Jong, and covers a total area of 21,600 square miles (URS 2009).

The rock strata in the southern part of the lease area strike north-south while the strata in the northern part strike northeast-southwest. The geologic formation dips gently to the east toward the center of the San Juan Basin at an angle of one to two degrees, and steepens toward the outcrop areas where the fairly abrupt monocline (Hogback) can be observed.

The stratigraphic section in the lease area reflects the Late Cretaceous transition of shallow marine depositional environment to a terrestrial fluvial depositional environment. During the late Cretaceous geologic period, the shoreline of a vast shallow inland sea shifted back and forth across the basin and ultimately receded, depositing alternating marine and nonmarine sediments. The strata in the lease area have not been intensively folded, and faults in the strata have limited displacement and extent.

The mine lease area surface, and adjacent areas, are comprised of the Lewis Shale, Pictured Cliffs Sandstone Formation, Fruitland Formation, Kirtland Shale and unconsolidated alluvial deposits in the valleys of the San Juan River, Chaco River, and the Chaco River tributaries.

All coal mined at the Navajo Mine SMCRA Permit Area exists within the Fruitland Formation, the shallowest coal-bearing formation. The extent of the Fruitland Formation’s coal seams differs across the Navajo Mine SMCRA Permit Area. Eight primary coal seams and eight corresponding overburden or interburden horizons are present within the Navajo Mine SMCRA Permit Area (BNCC 2009). Individual coal seams are as much as 20 feet thick, and average 6 feet in thickness.

Mining Methods


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Crushers and Mills


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Coal (thermal) tons  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe5,264,1773,397,5373,661,2314,107,4365,685,040
All production numbers are expressed as ROM coal.

Operational metrics

Coal tonnes mined  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe  ....  Subscribe5.26 M tons3.4 M tons3.66 M tons4.11 M tons5.69 M tons

Production Costs

Commodity production costs have not been reported.

Heavy Mobile Equipment


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Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 13, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required May 13, 2024

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Aerial view:


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