The final Coal Combustion Residue (CCR) rule applies to owners and operators of new and existing landfills, as well as new and existing surface impoundments, to include all lateral expansions of landfills and surface impoundments that dispose of,  or otherwise engage in solid waste management of CCR generated from the combustion of coal at electric utilities and independent power producers.

This CCR rule applies to certain inactive CCR surface impoundments (i.e., units not receiving CCR after October 14, 2015) at active electric utilities or independent power producer facilities, regardless of the fuel currently used at the facility to produce electricity.

The requirements of this rule do not apply to:

1. CCR landfills that ceased receiving CCR prior to October 14, 2015;

2. CCR units at facilities that have ceased producing electricity (or electricity and other thermal energy) prior to October 14, 2015;

3. CCR generated at facilities that are not part of an electric utility or independent power producer, such as manufacturing facilities, universities, and hospitals;

4. Fly ash, bottom ash, boiler slag, and flue gas desulfurization materials, generated primarily from the combustion of fuels (including other fossil fuels) other than coal, for the purpose of generating electricity, unless the fuel burned consists of more than fifty percent coal on a total heat input or mass input basis, whichever results in the greater mass feed rate of coal;

5. CCR that is beneficially used;

6. CCR placement at active or abandoned underground or surface coal mines; or

7. Municipal solid waste landfills that receive CCR.

New landfills are required to operate with a leachate collection and removal system which is designed to remove excess leachate that may accumulate on top of the composite liner. Existing CCR units can continue to receive CCR after October 14, 2015; however, the CCR units must meet all applicable groundwater monitoring and corrective action criteria to address any groundwater releases promptly. If the existing CCR surface impoundment was not constructed with a composite liner or with at least two feet of compacted soil with a specified hydraulic conductivity, this CCR regulation would require the CCR unit to retrofit or close, if the CCR surface impoundment detects concentrations of one or more listed constituents at statistically significant levels above the groundwater protection standards established by the CCR regulation.

The Effluent Limitations Guidelines and Standards for the Steam Electric Power Generating Point

Source Category regulation (ELG) establishes standards for direct discharge to waters of the US.

These standards are not being changed by the September 2017 EPA notice. The runoff or leachate for CCR units must meet these standards. Sources that are new after November 17, 2015 must meet the following discharge criteria:


Water that comes from a CCR unit, be it a landfill or a surface impoundment must meet the above discharge criteria. SMI Water has a proprietary process that can meet these criteria in a repeatable and economic manner.