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Coal miners work in two kinds of coal mines: surface and underground. The mining method used is determined by the depth and location of the coal seam and the geological formations around it. In surface or strip mining, the overburden—the earth above the coal seam—has to be removed before the coal can be dug out. Then, after the mining has been completed, the overburden is replaced so the land can be reclaimed. For underground mining, entries and tunnels are constructed so that workers and equipment can reach the coal.
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