Coal Combustion Residuals

RPM Solutions has years of experience managing coal combustion residuals (CCRs) in environmentally responsible way.RPM Solutions has years of experience managing coal combustion residuals (CCRs) in a safe and environmentally responsible way. Headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky, RPM Solutions is a reclamation, ash management and environmental services company using proprietary equipment technology and refined operating skills. RPM Solutions is committed to identifying solutions and utilizing best industry practices for recycling CCRs, which are valuable ingredients in cement production and concrete, asphalt, blasting grit and roof shingles.

Coal-fired electric generating stations and other large users of coal generate significant quantities of coal combustion residuals (CCRs), such as fly ash, bottom ash and boiler slag. Coal-fired plants generate millions of tons of waste each year in the form of combustion residuals. This material can contain mercury, cadmium, arsenic and other potentially harmful contaminants. Typically, electric utilities send their coal combustion residuals offsite or dispose of them in landfills and surface impoundments. Managing CCR is an increasing challenge as more questions are raised concerning its health and environmental impacts. Although there are many advantageous ways to use CCR, the success of a beneficial re-use program requires proper planning and notifications to federal, state and local regulators. Having worked with clients for years in addressing CCR issues, RPM Solutions has deep experience in managing CCRs.

Coal combustion residuals (CCRs) have historically been managed either in ponds (wet storage) or landfills (dry storage). Management in ponds is particularly prevalent in the eastern United States, where ponds vary in size.

The Disposal of Coal Combustion Residuals (CCRs) for Electric Utilities Rule became effective in 2015, by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The most significant provisions regarding the CCR landfills and surface impoundments have the stated intentions of reducing the potential for impoundment failures, protecting groundwater surrounding CCR management units and establishing clear operating and record-keeping requirements for electric companies that produce and manage CCRs and beneficially reuse Coal Combustion Products (CCPs). The CCR Rule provides two basic closure options: closure in place (CIP) and closure by removal (CBR). CIP is typically simpler and less costly than CBR. CBR might be considered when consolidating CCRs from smaller ponds into one location or if leaving the pond in place would have a significant long-term impact on groundwater and surface water.

Coal combustion residuals (CCRs) include a number of by-products produced from burning coal, including:

  • Fly Ash | a very fine, powdery material composed mostly of silica made from the burning of finely ground coal in a boiler.
  • Bottom Ash | a coarse, angular ash particle that is too large to be carried up into smoke stacks, so it forms in the bottom of the coal furnace.
  • Boiler Slag | molten bottom ash from slag tap and cyclone type furnaces that turns into pellets that have a smooth glossy appearance after it is cooled with water.
  • Flue Gas Desulfurization Material | leftover from the process of reducing sulfur dioxide emissions from a coal-fired boiler that can be a wet sludge consisting of calcium sulfite or calcium sulfate.

RPM Solutions designs structurally stable and environmentally secure landfills, impoundments and pond-to-landfill conversions for major electric power companies. RPM takes pride in developing innovative and cost-effective solutions for CCR disposal and we have saved clients lots of money.

RPM Solutions provides a range of technical services to help optimize efficiency and improve bottom line performance. For more information about putting the services of RPM Solutions to work regarding coal combustion residuals (CCRs), contact us at