The application of coal combustion by-products in mine site rehabilitation

Park, Jin Hee, Edraki, Mansour, Mulligan, David and Jang, Hang Seok (2014) The application of coal combustion by-products in mine site rehabilitation. Journal of Cleaner Production, 84 1: 761-772. doi:10.1016/j.jclepro.2014.01.049

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Author Park, Jin Hee
Edraki, Mansour
Mulligan, David
Jang, Hang Seok
Title The application of coal combustion by-products in mine site rehabilitation
Journal name Journal of Cleaner Production   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0959-6526
Publication date 2014-01-25
Year available 2014
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1016/j.jclepro.2014.01.049
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 84
Issue 1
Start page 761
End page 772
Total pages 12
Place of publication Amsterdam, Netherlands
Publisher Elsevier
Language eng
Abstract Coal combustion by-products (CCBs) generated from coal-fired power plants have been considered in some circumstances and in some applications as alternatives for natural materials. This review focused on the beneficial use of CCBs for mine sites. The alkaline pH of CCBs has been shown to play a neutralising role for acid mine drainage and the consequent precipitation of metals from solution, mainly as metal hydroxides. Coal combustion by-products have also been used for soil restoration, having been shown to improve one or more of the physical, chemical and biological properties of degraded soils which in turn has led to improvements in revegetation outcomes. In addition, fly ash has been used as a one of the materials in engineered covers that are constructed to encapsulate and isolate potentially hazardous mine wastes. The use of CCBs for mine void backfilling has been considered an opportunity for the bulk utilization of CCBs. Backfilling of underground mine voids with these materials presents the potential to reduce acid mine drainage, limit the risk of land subsidence and minimise and control the likelihood of mine fires. Even though the proactive use of CCBs may eliminate or reduce an environmental burden that remains if separate storage or disposal of these otherwise 'waste' materials is required, there may be adverse side effects that could occur through such uses of CCBs, such as the leaching of deleterious elements. Therefore, in the case of their use in mine backfilling, for example, possible environmental impacts need to be assessed and monitored during a testing phase in the context of other variables, and before backfilling with such materials is used on a large-scale. There is still a lack of well-researched information on the practical use of CCBs, and their potential environmental and health effects, and in their use for mine site rehabilitation purposes, effective guidelines and regulations are also limiting factors. In most countries, government regulations regard CCBs as a waste but not a hazardous waste. However, given the high potential CCBs have in a number of roles and functions relating to mine rehabilitation and mine closure, more research at the practical level, and more engagement at a government level, is required. (C) 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Formatted abstract
Highlights
• This review examines the beneficial use of coal combustion by-products (CCBs) for mine sites.
• Utilization of CCBs will reduce a burden on creating waste landfills.
• Possible environmental impacts need to be assessed for backfilling using CCBs.
• Lack of research and regulation are main limiting factors for the use of CCBs.

Coal combustion by-products (CCBs) generated from coal-fired power plants have been considered in some circumstances and in some applications as alternatives for natural materials. This review focused on the beneficial use of CCBs for mine sites. The alkaline pH of CCBs has been shown to play a neutralising role for acid mine drainage and the consequent precipitation of metals from solution, mainly as metal hydroxides. Coal combustion by-products have also been used for soil restoration, having been shown to improve one or more of the physical, chemical and biological properties of degraded soils which in turn has led to improvements in revegetation outcomes. In addition, fly ash has been used as a one of the materials in engineered covers that are constructed to encapsulate and isolate potentially hazardous mine wastes. The use of CCBs for mine void backfilling has been considered an opportunity for the bulk utilization of CCBs. Backfilling of underground mine voids with these materials presents the potential to reduce acid mine drainage, limit the risk of land subsidence and minimise and control the likelihood of mine fires. Even though the proactive use of CCBs may eliminate or reduce an environmental burden that remains if separate storage or disposal of these otherwise ‘waste’ materials is required, there may be adverse side effects that could occur through such uses of CCBs, such as the leaching of deleterious elements. Therefore, in the case of their use in mine backfilling, for example, possible environmental impacts need to be assessed and monitored during a testing phase in the context of other variables, and before backfilling with such materials is used on a large-scale. There is still a lack of well-researched information on the practical use of CCBs, and their potential environmental and health effects, and in their use for mine site rehabilitation purposes, effective guidelines and regulations are also limiting factors. In most countries, government regulations regard CCBs as a waste but not a hazardous waste. However, given the high potential CCBs have in a number of roles and functions relating to mine rehabilitation and mine closure, more research at the practical level, and more engagement at a government level, is required.
Keyword Coal combustion by-product
Fly ash
Mine
Backfilling
Rehabilitation
Regulation
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Available online 25 January 2014

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Centre for Mined Land Rehabilitation Publications
Official 2015 Collection
 
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 10 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 14 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Mon, 02 Jun 2014, 08:09:16 EST by Mr Mansour Edraki on behalf of Centre For Mined Land Rehabilitation