Coal depositional models attempt to predict the distribution and geometry of coal beds within given sequences or provinces. To date, models proposed for coals of alluvial and deltaic origin have emphasized depositional environment as the controlling variable. In this article, I propose that subsidence regime and, to a lesser extent, sediment supply are the dominant controls upon coal distribution rather than environment of accumulation. For this reason, most existing coal depositional models are likely to have limited predictive capability.

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