The coal industry is in its second straight year of decline after it plunged 11.4% in the first quarter.
In the third quarter, the industry lost an estimated $6.4 billion, according to data from the mining industry lobby group Coal Action Australia.
The mining industry is the largest industry in Australia and the biggest employer of Australians.
The mining sector has been struggling with rising electricity costs and the impact of the COVID pandemic.
The number of miners on the books in 2016 was the lowest since the mid-1990s, with only about 1,500 miners remaining on the book in 2016, according the Mining and Resource Group.
While the industry has been able to absorb the impact, there are fears it could struggle to recover as the mining downturn has continued and coal prices have been driven lower.
In a statement, the Australian Coal Council said the drop in the mining sector was largely driven by the coal mining industry.
“The mining and resource sector has experienced the worst downturn in mining history,” the statement said.
“There is a real prospect that mining in Queensland will continue to struggle until 2020 at the earliest, with mining employment at an all-time low.”
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