Charah, Inc. – New corporate headquarters uses recycled CCPs to meet LEEDs requirements
Admin note: We recently invited ACC member and coal combustion products (CCP) management experts, Charah, Inc. to prepare an editorial for the Coalblog and monthly member update newsletter. In this article, they describe how they beneficially used CCPs to help ensure their newly constructed corporate headquarters met LEEDs program requirements. We invite you to check out the article and Charah’s website (www.charah.com) to learn more about their offerings.
Founded in 1987, Charah®, Inc., a leading ash management provider for the coal-fired utility industry, is a company committed to coal combustion products (CCP) management and power plant support services. With extensive experience in CCP landfill operations, CCP sales & marketing, landfill construction, power plant support services and ash pond management, Charah provides the highest quality in performance and offers innovative solutions that are environmentally conscious.
It was only fitting that when Charah planned for design and construction of its new 20,000 square foot corporate headquarters, the facility maximized the use of CCPs in its construction allowing Charah to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program requirements. This innovative new building, scheduled for completion in June 2010, is located at 12601 Plantside Drive in Blankenbaker Station in Louisville, Kentucky,
“When we started to design our new headquarters, we thought it was very important for Charah to ‘walk the talk’ and build a LEED-certified facility which beneficially used fly ash and other recycled products,” said Charles Price, president and CEO of Charah. “Since we actively develop markets for the beneficial use of CCPs, we know first-hand how CCPs can improve the quality of many building materials while creating both cost and environmental benefits. Utilizing fly ash in concrete and other products, bottom ash in concrete masonry block and gypsum in wallboard not only eliminates the need to dispose of CCPs in landfills but also conserves our natural resources by substituting for materials that would typically require mining and energy intensive manufacturing. We get a better quality building product and the environment benefits.”
Working with architects Tucker Booker Donhoff + Partners and Kelley Construction, Charah developed a plan to use CCPs throughout the facility. Fly ash was used in all the concrete that was used for the project (floor slabs, basement walls, retaining walls, sidewalks, etc.) to maximum percentages allowed by the structural engineer of the project and contribute to the recycled content of the building. Several of the basement walls and the elevator shaft were constructed using concrete block made with Charah’s PriceLite® aggregate, a top of the line lightweight aggregate which is ASTM C330 and C331 certified.. In addition, the gypsum wallboard used in construction contains synthetic gypsum which is a byproduct of coal-fueled power production.
In addition to CCPs, Charah set high standards for the sustainability of the overall project by incorporated a variety of other recycled and sustainable products in the final design including floor and wall ceramic tile manufactured from recycled ceramic, low Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) carpet with recycled content, “low flow” plumbing fixtures and lighting with occupancy sensors. In addition, all new furniture is Green Guard Certified. An abundance of windows and light-colored interior wall finishes provide for increased natural light and reduce the amount of artificial lighting needed while the reflective metal roofing material helps reduce the cooling loads on the building. The exterior landscaping includes native plants and plants that do not require excessive irrigation.
“Many building products were selected based on the proximity of their manufacturing location to the project site to reduce transportation costs and fuel usage, and their subsequent impact on the environment,” added Mr. Price.
The building has an exercise room, shower facility and bike racks to encourage occupants to exercise, thereby increasing their quality of health. Preferential parking spaces will be provided to people who carpool or drive low emission vehicles.
This new headquarters is just another example of Charah’s long-standing commitment to the beneficial use of CCPs and finding innovative solutions that are environmentally conscious. Charah is a charter member of the EPA’s Coal Combustion Products Partnership (C2P2) which encourages beneficial use of CCPs. The company has already been recognized for other innovative initiatives. In April 2005, Charah was awarded the C2P2 first place award for “Innovation” by the EPA for its outstanding achievements in increasing the amount of CCPs beneficially used in its patent-pending, bottom ash-based packaged concrete mixes sold in select Home Depot store locations. In July 2008, Charah received its second C2P2 award, this one for “Partnership” recognizing its unique concrete packaging facility at AmerenUE’s Labadie Plant in Missouri.
We invite other ACC members to contact Jason Hayes about producing similar articles for publication on the Coalblog and in ACC newsletters.