A version of this article originally appeared on Clean Technica.

Fungi in the Agaricomycetes class, whose ancestors may have stopped coal deposits. (Photo by Seattle.roamer.)

In an ironic twist, genomics researchers have stumbled upon an incredible discovery — the same ancestral fungus that ended coal formation millennia ago may now be able to boost biofuel and bioenergy production.

The proposal, recently presented by a team of 71 researchers from 12 countries including the U.S. Department of Energy’s Joint Genome Institute (DOE JGI), may have identified what ended the development of coal deposits from fossilized plant remains 360-300 million years ago during the Carboniferous period.