A return to deep mining for coal has been advocated in Scotland in a bid to replenish energy suppliers in the country, reports the Scotsman.
Don Nicolson, head of the Scottish Resources Group, said that a return to deep mining would be needed if coal-fired power stations were to continue being a part of Scottish energy infrastructure.
The Scottish government has resisted moves to build more coal power stations as they produce huge quantities of greenhouse gases and the country is aiming to switch energy generation to cleaner methods.
Mr Nicolson told the paper: "If coal was to become part of our long-term future, which we think it will, then you need to go deep. That is where the bulk of the coal reserves are."
Plans are underway to produce technology that would reduce the carbon emissions from fossil fuel powered stations, but nothing is yet ready for widespread use.
The UK government plans to redevelop Britain's nuclear infrastructure in pursuit of cheap energy, but coal is generally expected to continue playing a role for some years.
If you want to find out more about how to compare energy suppliers and save up to £378 in minutes, click here.