The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) said April 6 that it plans to add a bottom ash dewatering facility at the Kingston power plant in Tennessee, which was the site of a major coal ash spill in December 2008.
The decision to build a facility is the result of an Environmental Assessment (EA) by TVA that looked at the potential environmental impacts of three alternatives – a no action alternative, which would continue the wet storage of bottom ash in ponds, and two construction options, including the dewatering facility.
A Finding of No Significant Impact was issued on the decision March 23. Under the preferred alternative, TVA plans to construct and operate a dewatering facility which will remove moisture from bottom ash before it is stored in an onsite, dry landfill.
Bottom ash is particles of ash, left from the burning of coal, that are too large to be captured airborne, and are instead collected at the bottom of the steam furnace.
Fly ash and gypsum are already stored dry onsite at Kingston. The project supports TVA’s plan to discontinue wet storage of coal combustion residuals and move towards dry storage throughout TVA’s coal fleet.
“Based on the findings in the EA, TVA concludes that implementing C — Construction/Operation of a Dewatering Facility with a Recirculation Ash Sluice Stream would not be a major federal action significantly affecting the environment,” according to the TVA finding. “Accordingly, an environmental impact statement is not required.”
The Kingston Fossil Plant is a 1.7 GW, coal-burning power plant with nine generating units located in Roane County, Tenn., on the shore of Watts Bar Lake.