Longwall mining of thin shallow coal seams utilizing open pits is technically feasible. The thinnest coal seam which can be mined using available technology is 34 inches. The capital expenditure for a 1,000,000-ton-per-year operation is $15,494,000, and the projected rate of return is 5 percent. Similar statistics for a conventional area surface mine are $18,937,000 capital and 14 percent return rate. The longwall surface mining method disturbs 63 acres of land per 1,000,000 tons, and the conventional area surface mine disturbs 198 acres. A significant bibliography of the technology involved is included.