Current Regulations Governing Coal Combustion Byproducts

Kentucky

Under Kentucky regulations, coal combustion byproducts (CCB) (including fly ash, bottom ash, and scrubber sludge produced by coal-fired electrical generating units) are exempt from regulation as hazardous wastes but are classified as special waste. Excluded from this regulation is boiler slag and residues of refuse-derived fuels such as municipal waste, tires, and solvents. Under Kentucky law, CCBs (as defined above) may be reused under permit by rule regulation:

  1. As an ingredient in manufacturing a product
  2. As an ingredient in cement, concrete, paint, and plastics
  3. As an anti-skid material
  4. As highway base course
  5. As structural fill
  6. As blasting grit
  7. As roofing granules
  8. For disposal in an active mining operation if the mine owner/operator has a mining permit authorizing disposal of special waste. 

Specific conditions for reuse of CCBs include: 

  • The CCB reuse may not create a nuisance
  • Erosion and sediment controls must be undertaken
  • The CCB reuse must be at least 100 ft from a stream and 300 ft from potable wells, wetlands, or flood plains
  • The ash must be non-hazardous
  • The generator must submit an annual report. 

Mine applications must be specifically authorized under the terms of a permit issued by the Department for Surface Mining, Reclamation, and Enforcement.

Contact Information:
George Gilbert
Manager, Solid Waste Branch
Kentucky Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Cabinet
14 Reilly Road, Frankfort, KY, 40601
Phone: (502) 564-6716
Email: gilbert@nrdep.nr.state.ky.us
Website: www.state.ky.us

Carol Ball
Kentucky Department for Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement
Phone: (502) 564-2320
Fax: (502) 564-6764

Detailed Review of CCB Regulations:
Under Kentucky regulations, CCBs are exempt from regulation as hazardous waste but are classified as special waste. Specifically included within the definition of coal combustion byproducts classified as special waste are fly ash, bottom ash, and scrubber sludge produced by coal-fired electrical generating units. Excluded is boiler slag, and residues of refuse-derived fuels such as municipal waste, tires, and solvents: KY. REV. STAT. ANN. §224.50-760(1)(a); 401 KY. ADMIN. REGS. 45:010 §(4).

Under Kentucky law, CCBs (as defined above) may be reused under permit by rule regulation as follows:

  • As an ingredient in manufacturing a product
  • As an ingredient in cement, concrete, paint and plastics
  • As anti-skid material
  • As highway base course
  • Structural fill
  • As blasting grit
  • As roofing granules
  • For disposal in an active mining operation if the mine owner/operator has a mining permit which authorizes disposal of special waste. (See also KY. REV. STAT. ANN. §350.270.)

Specific conditions for reuse of CCBs apply. These conditions include:

  • The CCB reuse may not create a nuisance
  • Erosion and sediment controls must be undertaken
  • The CCB reuse must be at least 100 feet from a stream and 300 feet from potable wells, wetlands, or flood plains
  • The ash must be non-hazardous
  • The generator must submit an annual report identifying the type and amount of waste released for reuse, the name and address of the recipient of the waste intended for reuse, and the specific use, if known, that each waste recipient made of the CCB

401 KAR 45:060.
Mine applications must be specifically authorized under the terms of a permit issued by the Department for Surface Mining, Reclamation, and Enforcement. Regulatory requirements to obtain such permit authorization along with operational requirements can be found at KY. REV. STAT. ANN. §350.270. In summary:

  • CCBs mixed with low-volume waste or material with hazardous waste characteristics may not be used in mine applications.
  • CCBs generated prior to a certain date may not be used in mine applications unless a satisfactory demonstration is made that the CCBs have not been mixed with low-volume waste or material with hazardous waste characteristics.
  • CCBs may be placed only in the pit or extraction area from which coal has been removed by surface mining. Placement of CCBs in other areas within the permit area may be allowed only upon a satisfactory demonstration, based on site-specific conditions and the characteristics of the CCBs, that no adverse environmental impacts will occur. Underground injection of CCBs is not authorized.
  • The permittee must keep records of the source and amount of CCBs received.
  • Any material that is not CCB approved for disposal must be removed. The permittee must keep records describing the removed material and its disposition.
  • The permittee must maintain maps showing each CCB disposal location and the volume of CCBs disposed of at that location.
  • An annual CCB lab analysis report must be submitted.
  • An application to modify an existing permit to initially include CCB disposal will be considered a major permit revision application.
  • An application for CCB mine disposal must demonstrate the permittee's legal right to conduct such activities. Public notice of the application is required.
  • The application must contain specific information such as the annual volume of CCBs that will be received, CCB analytical results, proposed operational procedures, hydrogeologic information, and a groundwater monitoring plan.