Coal Waste Impoundments: Risks, Responses, and Alternatives by Committee on Coal Waste Impoundments, Committee on Earth

By Committee on Coal Waste Impoundments, Committee on Earth Resources, Board on Earth Sciences and Resources, National Research Council

On October eleven, 2000, a leap forward of Martin County Coal Corporation’s coal waste impoundment published 250 million gallons of slurry in close to Inez, Kentucky. The 72-acre floor impoundment for coal processing waste material broke via right into a close by underground coal mine. even supposing the spill brought on no lack of human lifestyles, environmental harm was once major, and native water offers have been disrupted. This incident caused Congress to request the nationwide study Council to check how you can decrease the opportunity of comparable injuries sooner or later. This ebook covers the engineering practices and criteria for coal waste impoundments and how you can assessment, enhance, and display screen them; the accuracy of mine maps and how one can enhance surveying and mapping of mines; and substitute applied sciences for coal slurry disposal and usage. The ebook includes suggestion for a number of audiences, together with the Mine defense and overall healthiness management, the place of work of floor Mining, and different federal firms; nation and native policymakers and regulators; the coal and its specialists; and scientists and engineers.

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A coal seam is a composite of several layers, each of which may consist of a different mixture of coal material and mineral matter. Occasionally, these layers may be completely inorganic, such as shale, or high in mineral matter. Such layers are referred to respectively as partings and bony coal. Coal and associated rocks may contain significant amounts of sulfur, arsenic, and other materials whose presence in the waste engenders environmental concerns. The depositional environments that produced the coalfields of the Eastern United States were predominantly coastal-deltaic.

Chapter 7 addresses alternatives to slurry impoundments, including alternative mining and coal preparation methods, direct utilization of slurry, and alternative disposal techniques. Chapter 8 summarizes the committee’s conclusions and recommendations. Technical terms are defined in the glossary (Appendix C). It is important to recognize that this charge specifically directs the committee to focus its analysis on the engineering and characterization of coal waste impoundments. The committee was not asked to consider other factors related to potential impacts of disposing of coal wastes in an impoundment, or any other disposal option.

What are the options for the coal waste product to be refined further in order to produce a marketable product? To address the charge, the committee gathered, synthesized, and analyzed information by working in subgroups based on the three main topics in the Statement of Task (geotechnical aspects, site characterization, and alternative technologies). The committee held eight information-gathering meetings, including six subgroup meetings, between March and June 2001. The meetings included presentations by, and discussions with the sponsor, personnel from other government programs, and representatives of About this PDF file: This new digital representation of the original work has been recomposed from XML files created from the original paper book, not from the original typesetting files.

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