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Coal Combustion Residue Reference Materials

The following is a cursory list of materials covering topics related to Coal Combustion Residue (For more information of CCR terminology see the Glossary of Terms). Information on how to obtain the materials can be found below each item. Many of the items are available through the OSMRE Library.

How-To Manuals

  • Agricultural Applications
    • Agricultural Uses of Flue Gas Desulfurization (FGD) Gypsum, US Environmental Protection Agency. 2008
    • Land Application of Coal Combustion By-Products: Use in Agriculture and Land Application. EPRI, 1995.
      EPRI TR-103298. Electric Power Research Institute, 3412 Hillview Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94304.
      • Abstract
        • During the past two decades, more than 20 electric utilities have shown interest in the use of CCB's as soil amendments for agriculture and land reclamation. Research has been conducted by the US Dept. of Agriculture, Dept. of Energy, Bureau of Mines and the Tennessee Valley Authority. The types of CCB's investigated include alkaline fly ash (Class C), weakly alkaline to acidic fly ash (Class F), bottom ash from dry bottom pulverized coal boilers, flue gas desulfurization (FGD) gypsum and gypsic sludge, and fluidized bed combustion waste (FBCW). Applying CCB's to soils can provide several potential benefits, such as: (1) correcting excessive soil acidity, (2) supplementing soil nutrient supplies, (3) improving moisture retention, and (4) improving infiltration, drainage, and soil tilth. These effects are important both to plant growth and crop production and in the control of soil erosion by improving the physical and chemical qualitites of the plant rooting zone.

          This report is a survey of published and unpublished information derived mainly from studies supported by electric utilities. It summarizes the chief characteristics of CCB's as candidates for soil amendment; describes research projects and the major conclusions; provides data that illustrate the major effects of CCB's on soil and plant responses; and discusses the factors that have deterred the advancement of CCB utilization as soil amendments.

          A chief deterrent to the use CCB's as soil amendments is restrictive regulation, which, in large part, resulted from inadequate or misleading data. Specifically, experiments that utilized massive application rates of CCB's, as a means of potential disposal, yielded results that indicated severe limitations to the use of CCB's in agriculture, due primarily to excess boron and salinity, which caused phytotoxicity and yield reductions. Greenhouse studies also identified these potential problems.

          In contrast, results from experiments regarding the performance of CCB's as soil amendments under field conditions, indicate very positive benefits from a range of application rates selected to optimize agronomic response, using different crops, soils, and CCB types. Several credible field studies clearly show that problems of excessive uptake of elements potentially toxic to plants, animals, and humans, such as As, B, Cd, Cr, Pb, and Se, do not occur when attention is given to the selection of CCB whose qualities and rate of application match specific soil and plant needs based on soil testing and other agronomic factors, such as timing of application.

          Further research is needed both to better understand the nature and longevity of specific interactions between constituents introduced by CCB additions and the soil and, how, together, they affect plant nutrition and constituent leaching. Also, there is a need for studies of the interactions of CCB's with waste organic materials, with which they can be mixed to provide a fertilizer that is well balanced with respect to all essential plant nutrients. Well-documented research is essential to receiving regulatory approval and gaining the interest of potential users--necessary prerequisites to market development. Research that addresses the equipment needs peculiar to the handling and spreading of CCB's also may be needed to support the expansion of CCB utilization and land reclamation.

      • Ordering Information
        • EPRI Research Reports Center, Box 50490, Palo Alto, CA 94303, (415) 965-4081.

          Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

    • Manual for Applying Fluidized Bed Combustion Residue to Agricultural Lands. Stout, W.L., J.L. Hern, R.F. Korcak, and C.W. Carlson. 1988.
      USDA Agricultural Research Service, ARS-74, 15 pp.
      • Abstract
        • Atmospheric fluidized bed combustion (AFBC) is a process that reduces sulfur emissions from coal-fired electric-generating plants. The residue from this process is a mixture of alkaline oxides, calcium sulfate, and coal ash constituent. Since 1976, USDA/ARS has investigated the potential agriculture use of this residue. The investigations comprised an extensive series of laboratory, greenhouse, field plot, and animal feeding experiments. The best and safest use of AFBC residue in agriculture was as a substitute for lime. This report contains guidelines for applying AFBC residue to agricultural lands.
      • Ordering Information
        • NTIS Order Desk, National Technical Information Service, 5285 Port Royal Road, Springfield, VA 22161
          T: (703) 487-4650
          F: (703) 321-8547
          TDD: (703) 487-4639
          RUSH ORDERS: 1-800-553-NTIS (ADDITIONAL FEE)

          Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

  • Disposal Manuals
    • Coal Ash Disposal Manual: Third Edition. EPRI, 1995.
      EPRI TR-104137. Electric Power Research Institute, 3412 Hillview Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94304.
      • Abstract
        • This manual presents procedures for the evaluation of the technical environmental and economic factors involved with the disposal of coal fly ash and bottom ash. The manual has been prepared to aid utility design personnel in the selection and location of optimal disposal systems. Since publication of the 2nd edition in 1981, evolving regulatory criteria and environmental issues have necessitated changes in conventional ash management practices. Also there have been significant advances in the development of geosynthetics, which are used in a variety of applications at ash disposal sites, particularly in site liner and cap system applications. The 3rd edition of the Coal Ash Disposal Manual addresses these topics and provides updated information pertaining to ash disposal practices.
      • Ordering Information
        • Ordering Info: EPRI Research Reports Center, Box 50490, Palo Alto, CA 94303, (415) 965-4081.

    • FGD By-Product Disposal Manual: Fourth Edition. EPRI, 1995.
      EPRI TR-104731. Electric Power Research Institute, 3412 Hillview Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94304
      • Abstract
        • This manual presents as objective methodology for evaluating potential FGD sludge disposal sites and design approaches. A completely updated edition, the manual provides new information and references on existing industry disposal practices, regulatory constraints and trends, FGD sludge properties, and waste management system costs. Specifically, the manual offers guidelines for managing wastes from wet FGD systems, including lime, limestone, alkaline fly ash, magnesium-enhanced, and dual-alkali systems. Waste management subsystems addressed include transfer, storage, pretreatment/conditioning, transport, and disposal/utilization. The manual identifies physical and chemical waste material properties for each subsystem alternative and discusses their impact on design and operation.

      • Ordering Information
        • Ordering Info: EPRI Research Reports Center, Box 50490, Palo Alto, CA 94303, (415) 965-4081.
  • Fish and Wildlife
    • Coal Combustion Waste Manual: Evaluating Impacts to Fish and Wildlife. Soholt, L.F., et al. 1981.
      U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Biological Services Program, National Power Plant Team, FWS/OBS-81/05. 150 pp.
      • Abstract
        • The manual is designed to provide the reader with tools for evaluating specific situations which may be encountered in reviewing plans for the handling and storage of coal combustion wastes. It is designed to be used with the technical report Handling of Combustion and Emission - Abatement Wastes from Coal-Fired Power Plants: Implications for Fish and Wildlife Resources, FWS/OBS-80/33. The goal is to provide quantitative guidelines, where possible, for evaluating the potential extent of habitat disturbance and waste constituent dispersal. Criteria are provided for evaluating the potential for impact from trace elements in the waste.

      • Ordering Information
        • Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

  • Road Construction
    • Environmental Performance Assessment of Coal Combustion By-Product Use Sites: Road Construction Applications. EPRI, 1995.
      EPRI TR-105127. Electric Power Research Institute, 3412 Hillview Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94304
      • Abstract
        • One of the commonly reported constraints to the use of coal combustion by-products in such projects as large volume highway construction is regulatory impediments. These restrictions are related to the lack of data on the environmental performance and health effects of such uses. Putting more of these by-products to use will mean significant savings to utilities. To meet the need for more environmental data, EPRI initiated studies in 1987 on the environmental performance of utility by-products at existing utilization projects.

          Phase I of the project involved detailed investigations at two existing ash sites (EPRI reports EN-6532 and EN-6533). The goal of this report was to determine if any long-term changes have occurred in soil, groundwater, or vegetation around roads, embankments, and structural fill projects where utility coal combustion by-products have been used in construction. Information was gathered to determine whether chemicals from the utility by-products used in the road subgrades had impacted soils, groundwater, or vegetation. In addition, studies of the hydro geologic conditions were made so that effective detailed investigations could follow.

          Despite certain environmental factors, all five sites performed in a similar fashion. For example, there was only limited migration of by-product constituents into underlying soils and a lack of clear trends from impacts on groundwater. The effects of by-product use on vegetative uptake and growth is also similar for all of the sites, regardless of the differences in soil pH or climate. The results of this research underscore the fact that environmental damage from the high-volume use of coal combustion by-products can be prevented with careful planning.

      • Ordering Information
        • Ordering Info: EPRI Research Reports Center, Box 50490, Palo Alto, CA 94303, (415) 965-4081.
          Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

    • Fly Ash Facts for Highway Engineers. American Coal Ash Association, 1995.
      FHWA-SA-94-081. U.S. Dept. Of Transportation. Federal Highway Admin. Wash. D.C. 70 p.
      • Abstract
        • Coal fly ash is a coal combustion byproduct (CCB) that has numerous applications as an engineering material; the annual production of CCB's is nearly 82 million metric tons (90 million tons). Since the first edition of Fly Ash Facts for Highway Engineers in 1986, substantial information has been accumulated regarding the use of fly ash. The purpose of this document is to provide technical information about engineering applications to potential users of CCB's and to advance the use of CCB's in ways that are technically sound, commercially competitive, and environmentally safe.

      • Ordering Information
        • Ordering Info: American Coal Ash Association, 2760 Eisenhower Ave., Suite 304, Alexandria, VA 22134-4553, (703) 317-2400, FAX (703) 317-2409
          Website: http://www.acaa-usa.org/
          Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

    • Use of FGD Gypsum and Bottom Ash in Roadway and Building Construction. EPRI, 1994.
      EPRI TR-103856 Electric Power Research Institute, 3412 Hillview Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94304.
      • Abstract
        • This report presents the results of a field evaluation concerning the use of FGD gypsum and bottom ash by-products in construction of a 300-ft roadway at Texas A&M University's Riverside Campus. The project also evaluated durability requirements for structural-grade concrete applications. Specifically, construction involved a 7% cement-stabilized blend of FGD gypsum and two types of bottom ash by-products. The aggregate for this mixture was a 50/50 blend of gypsum and ash, while the ash faction was composed of a 75/25 blend of wet bottom ash (boiler slag) and dry bottom ash. Post construction field tests show that the integrity of the road is sound, with no signs of incipient distress. Falling Weight Deflectometer data indicate that the road base, after 18 months of service, is still gaining in strength. This may be due to the incorporation of bottom ash into the stabilized gypsum mixture, a process that significantly enhanced compaction and led to a stronger road base material. In other testing, water quality sampling and soil analysis near the job site as well as laboratory analyzes of five road base mixtures for leachable metals, sulfur, and carbonates did not reveal any adverse environmental impact associated with the by-product use.

      • Ordering Information
        • Ordering Info: EPRI Research Reports Center, Box 50490, Palo Alto, CA 94303, (415) 965-4081.
          Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

  • Other
    • Coal Combustion By-Products. Texas Coal Ash Utilization Group. 1994.
      • Abstract
        • This looseleaf notebook contains a discussion of issues and regulations in relation to the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission's use of coal combustion by-products. It includes: a 1995 position letter from the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission; statistics and discussion of CCB's in Texas; a U.S. Department of Energy report entitled, Barriers to the Increased Utilization of Coal Combustion/Desulfurization Byproducts by Governmental and Commercial Sectors; the Texas Industrial Waste Regulations (1993); and Texas Coal Ash Utilization Group Responses to General Land Office Questions Regarding Coal Combustion By-Product Utilization (June 1994).

      • Ordering Information
        • Interlibrary Loan Request:

          Debbie McGinnis, Librarian
          Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement
          1999 Broadway
          Denver, CO 80202-5733
          T:(303) 844-1436
          F:(303) 844-1545
          E-mail: dmcginnis@osmre.gov

Page Last Modified/Reviewed: 4/3/14

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