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Brian N Shaffer, PG

Brian N. Shaffer, P.G. is a Supervisory Geologist with the USGS and Co-Project Chief of the Evolving Utilization of Solid Energy Fuels Project.  Utilizing his 26+ years of experience as a geologist in the coal industry, he leads the Project's research efforts to assess the quantity, quality, location, and accessibility of the Nation’s remaining recoverable coal resour

Career History:

Since January, 2016, Brian has been a Supervisory Geologist for the USGS in the Central Energy Resources Science Center in Denver, CO. He is Co-Project Chief for the Evolving Utilization of Solid Energy Fuels Project, tasked with assessing the coal resources and reserves of the United States.  Currently, the U.S. Coal Resources and Reserves Assessment Project is conducting assessment studies in the Yampa coal field in northwestern Colorado and Williston Basin in Montana and North Dakota.  Team members are also conducting research to develop geostatistical methods for quantifying geological uncertainty in coal resource assessments and utilizing geostatistical methods to develop equations to predict values for certain coal quality parameters. 

Previously, Brian was the Senior Manager Geology of the Northern Appalachian Region (NAPP) for Alpha Natural Resources.  He began his career in 1989 as a geology co-op student for Cyprus Coal Company at Emerald Mine in Waynesburg, PA.  Starting in 1990, Brian worked at the Cyprus Coal Company's Emerald Mine and Cumberland Mine, in Greene County, PA, where he gained experience in defining, mapping, and interpreting underground geologic conditions and ground control issues associated with longwall coal mining operations.  Brian was also involved in the exploration and geologic mapping of the Upper Freeport, Greene Hill, and Greene Manor reserve blocks in Greene County for Cyprus-Amax and Foundation Coal Companies.  As Senior Manager Geology, Brian supervised a team of three geologists that managed exploration and geologic mapping activities, conducted reserve assessments, and modeled geologic and coal quality trends for the Emerald and Cumberland longwall deep mines, as well as for Amfire Mining, which produced both thermal and metallurgical coal from numerous underground and surface mines in central Pennsylvania.  He has over 26 years of experience as a geologist in the coal industry and has worked in underground coal mines in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, Colorado, Wyoming, and Utah.    

Brian has worked as a part time instructor for Waynesburg University, where he taught physical geology courses.  He also has worked as a teaching assistant in the Department of Geography and Geology at West Virginia University.


*Disclaimer: Listing outside positions with professional scientific organizations on this Staff Profile are for informational purposes only and do not constitute an endorsement of those professional scientific organizations or their activities by the USGS, Department of the Interior, or U.S. Government