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Thursday, June 7, 2012

Transportation Bill - Deadline Approaching - FLY ASH Regulations in Highway Construction

Fly Ash Description (Wilkpedia):
Fly Ash is one of the residues generated in combustion, and comprises the fine particles that rise with the flue gases. Ash which does not rise is termed bottom ash. In an industrial context, fly ash usually refers to ash produced during combustion of coal. Fly ash is generally captured by electrostatic precipitators or other particle filtration equipment before the flue gases reach the chimneys of coal-fired plants, and together with bottom ash removed from the bottom of the furnace is in this case jointly known as coal ash. Depending upon the source and makeup of the coal being burned, the components of fly ash vary considerably, but all fly ash includes substantial amounts of silicon dioxide (SiO2) (both amorphous and crystalline) and calcium oxide (CaO), both being endemic ingredients in many coal-bearing rock strata

Sunshine State News (Tallahasse, FL) 6-6-12
The self imposed deadline that Congress set is drawing near.  The construction industry is watching closely as the final agreement of the federal transportation bill is being reached.

A bipartisan amendment stands to increase sensible regulatory measures on fly ash, an end product of coal combustion, and should be included in the final federal transportation bill. It would also encourage fly ash recycling which has proven beneficial to the environment and the economy as a cost-effective product to build roads, tunnels and bridges. However, if the talks about the federal transportation bill fail, the cost and environmental benefits of this amendment go down with it.

The cost savings of recycled fly ash products is a major advantage for taxpayers and construction firms. Fly ash materials keep repair and maintenance costs low as the product is stronger and last longer than traditional road-building materials. According to a report from the American Roads and Transportation Builders’ Association (ARTBA), more than 55 million tons of fly ash were recycled for construction purposes across the nation.

In addition to its economic vitality, the continued use and production of fly ash secures more than a quarter million jobs.

Federal lawmakers have proposed this amendment to allow for greater use of fly ash in transportation projects and to provide greater EPA oversight on each state’s fly ash regulations.

It will be interesting to see what Congress decides on the federal transportation bill and if they will meet their deadline.

To see the full story, visit the following link:

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