2016 / Editorial / General News

Illegal coal mines a 'lifeline' in Donbas

  • Photographer
    Filip Warwick

Coal extracted from small, dangerous mines provides much-needed money in eastern Ukraine. Thousands of such mines, some as deep as 300m, are believed to operate in the region - providing a source of employment and coal for locals. Miners say a team of three to four workers can extract between three to five tonnes of coal a day, on average, depending on the mine and the equipment available. Although many mines closed in the wake of the Soviet Union's collapse, some who had been involved in the industry have used their knowledge and expertise to open kopankas throughout the Donbas region.