Tailings Impoundment Closure: It's All in the Eye of the Beholder

by Aaron J. Antell, P.E., (M.ASCE), Principal Engineer; D'Appolonia Engineering, Pittsburgh, PA, ajantell@dappolonia.com,
Robert M. Shusko, P.E., (M.ASCE), Senior Principal Engineer, President, rmshusko@dappolonia.com,
, D'Appolonia Engineering, Pittsburgh, PA

Serial Information: Geo-Strata —Geo Institute of ASCE, 2017, Vol. 21, Issue 3, Pg. 46-50,52

Document Type: Feature article

Abstract: Since the early 1900s, the mining and power-generation industries have disposed of tailings and other waste products using impoundments. The term "tailings" typically refers to the fine-grained waste product generated from metals and mineral mining. More recently, and with respect to closure requirements and criteria, the term "tailings impoundment" has grown in certain engineering communities to include not only traditional tailings impoundments, but coal refuse slurry impoundments, coal combustion residual impoundments, and any structure that retains hydraulically-placed waste or byproduct impounded by an embankment or dam structure.

Subject Headings: Coal | Mine wastes | Water storage | Recycling | Embankment dams | Waste disposal | Electric power | Industrial wastes


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