n all discussions of coal ash disposition — either through beneficial reuse or keeping it intact but contained — the overriding concern is safety.

The cap-in-place solution has been solidly debunked from a safety standpoint. The market for beneficiation of coal ash in building products still lags far behind the over-abundance of legacy CCR. Yes, the market may eventually catch up, but leaving toxic CCR in the ground indefinitely while it waits for a new home isn’t an option. What is the answer? … safeSTORAGE®

Government regulations have necessitated more rapid and safe disposition, raising these questions for stakeholders:

  • What method to use?
  • How long will it take to implement?
  • What will it cost?

The new, finalized Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR) rule essentially prohibits any pollution of groundwater or water bodies by coal plant sites, regardless of the exact source. More utilities find themselves compelled by law to find innovative ways to dispose of their legacy CCR. Drying and excavation is a monumental challenge, but the challenge doesn’t stop there. Excavation results in large stockpiles that need to be properly stored. Indecision over how to proceed, or an inability to pick a middle path for all stakeholders, only compounds the problem.

JOHN SWENSONFounder | Inventor | Owner
“You cannot solve this non-traditional CCR storage problem with just a traditional approach.”




When engineers in ancient Egypt cut and laid the first limestone block, they probably wondered if and when their project would ever end. But that didn’t stop them from marshalling their forces to stack block upon block for years until they finally had a pyramid.

Similarly, it’s the duty of all stakeholders in the CCR dilemma to rise and conquer the challenges they face today, one site at a time, until no CCR is left behind.

Creativity, ingenuity, and innovation is the answer to find a middle-path, but it takes all stakeholders to embrace change.

Utilities have typically been less than transparent in divulging their methods and costs. Ironically, this has forced environmentalists and affected citizens to become much better educated and organized, making them potent potential allies equipped to bring new ideas to the table.

Now’s the time for everyone to come together, think together, and determine best practices for dealing with CCR in their communities. Whether it’s safeSTORAGE® now to become inventory for future beneficiation, permanent on-site disposition or relocation, the answers are out there.

It takes a village to find them.

EnCAP-IT has been involved in dozens of CCR unit site-level analyses. They all had common challenges and concerns: not enough space to safely store all the coal ash being excavated. While traditional storage methods lend, somewhat, to solving this dilemma, they often come up short. In every one of these analyses, using our tools provided a far safer, better, and cheaper way in which to properly create excavated ash reuses and/or storage.

When EnCAP-IT goes to work, we bring our tools with us.