COAL COMBUSTION RESIDUAL (CCR) POND CLOSURE SOLUTIONS

PROJECT HIGHLIGHT

FLY ASH REMOVAL & TRANSPORTATION
FORMER COAL-FIRED POWER PLANT
KALAMAZOO, MI

  • Removal of approximately 7.5 acres of fly ash
  • Approximately 6,000 cy or about 120 truckloads moved daily
  • Removal of 212,500 cy of fly ash from river bank
  • Sensitive residential and business area

The City of Kalamazoo acquired land for development on the northeast edge of Kalamazoo’s downtown area and along the Kalamazoo River which had accumulated fly ash from a former coal-fired power plant once operated by a Michigan-based utility. The ash covered about 7.5 acres of this site and reached to heights of 25 ft in some places. After analyses, the City concluded that the cost of removing the ash was prohibitive, but through a collaborative effort with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, a Michigan-based utility company, and two engineering firms, a revised approach made the project affordable by transporting the ash to landfills to be used as fill material to contour the sites for closure. This project required significant coordination to effectively execute the work including a tightly managed, continuous flow of trucks traveling between the ash site and the landfills. Approximately 6,000 cy, or about 120 truckloads, per day was moved while minimizing dust and noise to the surrounding businesses and residential areas.

 

Great Lakes E&I first cleared the site of mature trees and underbrush. Trees and underbrush were chipped and a large tub grinder was used to downsize all the stumps. The wood chips were repurposed for dust control during the project. While one crew removed ash, another crew managed the incoming fly ash at the landfills. Operators shaped the paper and fly ash waste into two very large hills with long, gradual slopes. The hills were covered with geosynthetic liners and capped with 2 ft of specified sand and topsoil. At the river bank, 212,500 cy of fly ash was removed. The site was covered with fresh top soil and prepared for development.

 

This 10,000 man-hour project was completed ahead of schedule, under budget, and without incident.