2015 EBJ Business Achievement Award

Each year Environmental Business Journal recognizes outstanding business performance in the environmental industry with our EBJ Business Achievement Awards. Environmental Business Journal is proud to announce its 18th annual business achievement awards. Congratulations to the winners, thanks to all the companies that submitted nominations, and we hope to see you in San Diego for the official awards ceremony at Environmental Industry Summit XIV on March 9, 2016 at Hotel del Coronado in San Diego.

In October-December 2015, EBJ solicited the environmental industry via e-mail, social media, its website, industry events and word-of-mouth for nominations for the EBJ Business Achievement Awards. Nominations were accepted in 200-word essays in either specific or unspecified categories. Categories or size designations may have been adjusted depending on the volume of nominations or the number of worthy recipients. Final awards were determined by a committee of EBJ staff and EBJ editorial advisory board members.

Disclaimer: company audits were not conducted to verify information or claims submitted with nominations.

  • Business Achievement: Small Firms (less than $10 million)

    Gold Medal ► Baer Engineering and Environmental Consulting Inc. for growing revenues 180% in 2015 to exceed $5 million. The increased revenues are primarily the result of a new practice area in cultural resources and hazardous materials management for the U.S. Military. Baer Engineering and Environmental Consulting, headquartered in Austin, Texas and with offices in Houston and San Antonio, was founded in 1992 and provides facilities, chemical, civil, water resources and environmental engineering, and industrial hygiene, safety and health services to institutional, governmental, commercial, and industrial clients.

    Gold Medal ► HSG LLC (Las Vegas, NV), doing business as Herndon Solutions Group for game-changing growth due to its October 2015 win of a $101-million contract with NASA. HSG is an SBA 8(a), woman-owned business that was established in 2008 as a professional services firm developing and implementing practical solutions and services in environmental, safety, emergency planning, and sustainability management. HSG is the majority owner and managing member of Integrated Mission Support Services LLC, an SBA Joint Venture that was awarded the $101-million, five-year NASA Kennedy Space Center Environmental and Medical Contract, making HSG a Prime Contractor for the nation’s premier multi-user spaceport. HSG transitioned from a company of 25 staff members to a workforce of over 140 with the addition of the JV and expects revenue to increase over 150% in 2016.

    Silver Medal ► Evista (Newport Beach Calif.) for consistently high growth in the past several years, including 33% in 2015 to reach $4.9 million in revenue. Evista provides environmental consulting services to the property insurance and restoration industry, specializing in indoor air quality, asbestos and lead, mold, sewage contamination and an environmental cost and quality (ECQ) management practice. In 2014 Evista’s three-year growth was more than 600%, ranking it 759 on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest growing private companies. In 2015 Evista’s three-year growth rate was 352% to $4.9 million (and 24 jobs added), ranking it 1192 on the Inc. 5000 list.

    Bronze Medal ► Environmental Management and Planning Solutions Inc. (EMPSi, San Francisco) for exceptional revenue growth and profitability over its 10-year history. From 2010-2015, gross and net revenues grew by over 200%, or a compound annual growth rate of 20%. In 2015, EMPSi grew gross revenue by 10%, net revenue by 37%, and EBITDA by 106% and is approaching the $10 million revenue mark: Hard contract backlog is more than $11 million. Energy, pipeline, transmission, mining, and water resource clients, along with key Federal and state agencies, entrust EMPSi with some of their most complex and high-profile environmental permitting and compliance projects. In 2015 EMPSi led planning efforts across the west to help the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finalize land use plans to conserve key sage grouse habitat. These plans were critical in helping the Forest Service to conclude that the rangeland bird no longer warrants protection under the Endangered Species Act. The firm was awarded key water protection contracts including $2 million to prepare environmental compliance efforts for the Truckee Canal for the Bureau of Reclamation and a study to examine river operations for the Rio Grande River.

  • Business Achievement: Small Firms ($10 - 25 million)

    Gold Medal ► Cherokee Enterprises Inc. (CEI, Miami Lakes, Fla.) for growth of 66% in 2015, putting the company at $19.4 million in revenue for the year. CEI broke ground at its first construction of a compressed natural gas station for the Jacksonville Transit Authority and completed the largest-volume project in the company’s history for the Orlando International Airport Fuel Farm Improvements. CEI is a privately held company founded in 1999, providing turnkey engineering and construction solutions to support infrastructure improvements and environmental compliance for local, state, and federal governments, and large private clients.

    Silver Medal ► Rincon Consultants for growth in multiple markets. From 2012 to 2015 Rincon Consultants’ revenues grew 74% from $9.8 million to $17.4 million, fueled by an improving California economy and ongoing success in the transportation, water, and energy/utilities market sectors. During this time Rincon expanded its cultural and natural resources capabilities and contract planning services. Rincon Consultants is a multi-disciplinary environmental consulting firm for government and industry focused on the transportation, water resources, energy and utilities, education and land development market sectors. Founded in 1994, the company has more than 96 professionals in 10 California offices (Ventura, San Luis Obispo, Carlsbad, Los Angeles, Monterey, Santa Cruz, Oakland, Riverside, Fresno, and Sacramento) in environmental science and planning; regulatory compliance and permitting; biological and cultural resources, contamination assessment and remediation, and sustainability services.

    Silver Medal ► Marstel-Day LLC (Fredericksburg, Va.) for achieving significant financial growth during a period of tumult in the federal contractor marketplace due to sequestration and other factors. In 2012, Marstel-Day posted consulting income of $12.5 million and had a three-year average annual income of $7.8 million. In 2015, Marstel-Day will post income of $21.6 million, an increase of more than 77% from 2012. In addition, Marstel-Day’s three year income-average rose to $17.8 million, up more than 83% from 2012-2015. In late 2015, Marstel-Day was awarded one of the Small Business contracts for the $99 million US Army Corps of Engineers Regional Environmental Acquisition Tool (REAT) for Mobile and was selected for one of the unrestricted contracts for the $250 million REAT, positioning the company for continued growth in the federal market space.

    Bronze Medal ► BrightFields Inc. for revenue growth of 40% from 2012 to 2015 and for exceeding $10 million in revenues in 2015 on growth of more than 11%. BrightFields is a 45-person environmental consulting and remediation services firm (up from 30 employees in 2012) headquartered in Wilmington, Del., with offices in Philadelphia and Baltimore. For years BrightFields’s environmental work has supported land acquisition and construction projects on the Wilmington riverfront for the State of Delaware, City of Wilmington and others, as well as work for private developers in many regions as the firm’s footprint has broadened substantially from its Wilmington roots. BrightFields was founded in 2003 by Marian Young and Mark Lannan when they purchased the assets of WIK Associates, where they had both worked since 1993. BrightFields is a certified woman-owned business in Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and New Jersey.

  • Business Achievement: Mid-size Firms ($25 - 200 million)

    Gold Medal ► Cascade Drilling LP (Woodinville, Wash.) for growing revenue from $26 million in 2010, and $103 million in 2014, to an estimated $200 million in 2015 and earning the number 87 spot in Engineering News-Record’s ranking of top 200 environmental firms, a jump of 39 places. Founded in 1991, Cascade Drilling has grown from a specialized regional drilling provider to a national, full service provider for site investigation, remediation and drilling. Cascade’s workforce has grown from 5 to more than 850 employees. The company achieved aggressive growth through strategic acquisition to provide geographic coverage and logistical support for clients across the United States and enhance its fleet of drill rigs, support vehicles and specialty equipment. The company’s growth strategy also focused on patented, leading edge technology offering clients a wide range of integrated, in-situ remediation technologies and field services for the cost effective cleanup of contaminated soil and groundwater.

    Silver Medal ► Willdan Group Inc. (Anaheim, Calif.), a provider of professional technical and consulting services, for growth of more than 30% in 2015. Total contract revenue for the nine months ended October 2, 2015 increased 33.1% to $103.6 million compared with $77.8 million for the same three quarters in 2014. The increase was due primarily to a 55% increase in contract revenue for the Energy Efficiency Services segment and a 15% increase in contract revenue for the Engineering Services segment. Growth in Energy Efficiency Services was attributable to $18.5 million of contract revenue generated by acquired companies 360 Energy and Abacus, as well as organic revenue growth. Contract revenue for Energy Efficiency Services, Engineering Services, Public Finance Services, and Homeland Security Services was $58.3 million, $33.9 million, $9 million and $2.5 million, respectively, through the third quarter.

    Silver Medal ► NV5 (Hollywood, Fla.) for growth of more than 40% to $112.3 million in revenues through the nine months ended September 30, 2015, compared with $79.6 million for the same period in 2014. Net revenues through the third quarter were $88.9 million, an increase of 46%. Increases in gross and net revenues were due to organic growth from NV5’s existing platform, as well as to contributions from acquisitions in 2014 and 2015. Organic growth for the period was 11%. NV5 expects full-year 2015 gross revenues, including the impact of acquisitions closed through October 31, 2015, to range from $155 million to $162 million, which would represent an increase to 50% from 2014 gross revenues of $108.4 million.

    Bronze Medal ► David Evans and Associates Inc. (DEA, Portland, Ore.) grew 16% in 2015 to $144 million primarily due to expansion in the Southern California market and organic growth in all of DEA’s service areas. Founded in 1976, DEA employs more than 950 professionals in offices in nine states. The company is a leader in the design and management of complex transportation, land development, water resources, and energy projects, combining the talents of architects, engineers, landscape architects, planners, scientists, and surveyors to provide a complete range of services. In 2015 DEA also acquired Triad, a 50-person, multidisciplinary design firm based near Seattle.

    Bronze Medal ► Maser Consulting (Red Bank, NJ) for growth of 21% in 2015 due to geographic expansion and branding as infrastructure, private development, industrial and telecommunications markets all were strong. The firm also acquired two small New Jersey-based firms in 2015: ECI Environmental Engineers in February and Kernan Consulting Engineers in June. On January 4, 2016, Triangle Surveying and Mapping, a 47-person surveying company based in Miami, Florida joined Maser Consulting as a strategic move toward providing new opportunities and expansion options for both entities. Maser Consulting is a 600+-person, privately owned, multi-discipline engineering firm with a balance of work in the public and private sectors. New project highlights in 2015 were a $10 million 5-year term contract with the FAA to provide multiple services at a training facility in Atlantic County New Jersey and a 3-year contract with New York Department of Design and Construction for $6.5 million.

    Bronze Medal ► EORM (San Jose, Calif.) for its fifth straight year of double-digit revenue increases. Strong organic growth of its core environmental, health, safety and sustainability consulting services, combined with a strategic acquisition of Texas-based Hill Country Environmental, led EORM to 2015 revenue growth of more than 10% from $30 million in 2014 to nearly $34 million in 2015; net service revenues grew by nearly 25% to more than $27 million in 2015. Operating profit grew 20% in 2015 and more than tripled over the last three-year period, and EORM’s headcount is now over 200 employees. In January 2015, EORM was acquired by BSI, a UK-headquartered global business standards company founded in 1901 with over 80,000 clients in 172 countries. Now an operating subsidiary of BSI’s Professional Services business in the United States, EORM serves as a platform for leading BSI’s global expansion of its EHS consulting and compliance services.

    Bronze Medal ► ACT Environmental Services grew 25% in 2015, due to growth in both new and existing client accounts. Headquartered in Sunnyvale, CA, ACT provides hazardous and biological waste management, remediation, recycling, disposal, treatment, health and safety, and compliance services for a diverse set of customer industries including Pharmaceuticals, Manufacturing, Research, High Tech and many more. ACT has over 500 U.S. clients that range from small businesses to local, state and federal government agencies to well-known, multinational Fortune 100 firms.

  • Business Achievement: Large Firms ($1 billion+)

    WSP Global Inc. (Montreal, Canada) for reported gross revenue growth of 152% to $4.4 billion and net revenue growth of 117% to $3.2 billion for the nine months ended September 26, 2015. Much of that growth was attributable to the September 2014 acquisition of infrastructure services firm Parsons Brinckerhoff, which added 13,500 people to WSP's 17,500 global workforce, but WSP continued a global acquisition program that netted 7 firms in 2015 and 6 firms in 2014. In releasing third quarter results, WSP's president and CEO Pierre Shoiry said: "As we reach the milestone of one year since the Parsons Brinckerhoff acquisition… We continue to focus on increasing revenues stemming from our enhanced and diversified platform. This demonstrates the soundness of our growth model, which is based on expanding our global presence and deepening our technical expertise in the market segments that we serve. The recent acquisition of MMM is consistent with this objective, and we are pleased to welcome 2,000 new colleagues to the team." MMM is a Canada-based leader in public-private partnerships and the delivery of large-scale, complex P3 projects involving transportation, highways, bridges, transit, airports and buildings.

    SNC-Lavalin Group Inc. (Montreal, Canada) for revenue growth of 28% to $6.9 billion for the first nine months of 2015. Growth was mainly due to an increase in the company's Oil & Gas and Power segments as a result of its August 2014 acquisition of Kentz Corporation Ltd., a global company with 15,500 employees in 36 countries providing engineering, construction management and technical support services to the oil and gas industry. Overall the transaction created a group with approximately 45,000 employees, annual revenues of about C$10 billion and continued SNC-Lavalin's "ongoing transformation into a global Tier-1 engineering and construction (E&C) company." In releasing financial results, Neil Bruce, president and CEO remarked on the company's focus on its ICI or Infrastructure Concession Investments business, but said: "Our principal focus right now is on maximizing profitability of the E&C [engineering and construction] platform. We will update the market in due course on our plans to crystallise value from this important asset."

    Stantec (Edmonton, Canada) for gross revenue growth of 15% to $2.2 billion and net revenue growth of 16% to $1.8 billion for the nine months ended September 30, 2015. Stantec's growth has been paced by acquisitions, with more than 75 since 2000 of which eight were in 2014 (all in the United States) and five in 2015 (four in the U.S. and one in Canada). Stantec's 2015 acquisitions include VI Engineering, VA Consulting, and Fay, Spofford & Thorndike, in addition to the Canadian engineering operations of Montreal-based Dessau, with 1,300 Dessau employees from 20 offices throughout Quebec and Ontario joining Stantec. Stantec's acquisition strategy allowed the company to maintain growth in 2015 as organic gross revenue was reported down $98 million through three quarters of 2015, primarily due to retractions in Stantec's Energy & Resources business operating unit. Stantec's 15,000 employees working in over 250 locations provide planning, engineering, architecture, interior design, landscape architecture, surveying, environmental sciences, project management, and project economics services for infrastructure and facilities projects.

  • Business Achievement: Mergers & Acquisitions

    Cascade Drilling (Woodinville, Wash.) for its aggressive growth strategy and completing five acquisitions in 2015. In February, Cascade acquired Vironex Environmental Field Services (Wilmington, Del.), a provider in-situ remediation services and high resolution site characterization technology. Cascade acquired TerraTherm (Gardner, Mass.), a leader in situ and on site thermal remediation technologies in August. The October 2015 acquisition of ARS Technologies (New Brunswick, N.J.) added to Cascade's technical services team with pneumatic fracturing, atomized injection and in situ treatment processes. In November 2015, Cascade enhanced its drilling fleet through its acquisitions of Aquifer Drilling & Testing (Mineola, N.Y.) and Terra Sonic International (Marietta, Ohio). The December 2015 acquisition of Stone Environmental (Montpelier, Vt.) bolstered Cascades' technical services with profiling and analytical systems. During 2015 Cascade's workforce grew from 300 to over 850 employees nationwide.

    In 2015, Tetra Tech (Pasadena, Calif.) announced two strategic acquisitions: Cornerstone and Coffey. Cornerstone Environmental Group (Middletown, N.Y.), an environmental engineering/consulting firm focused on the U.S. solid waste market, had 160 employees and approximately $30 million in annual revenue. In October Tetra Tech acquired Coffey International Ltd., a world-class consulting and engineering firm headquartered in Sydney, Australia with 3,300 staff and revenue of A$556 million. Coffey delivers solutions across three main areas: international development, geo-services, and project management. The combined entity is positioned as the leading global consulting firm for international development and expands Tetra Tech's geographic presence in Australia and the Asia Pacific. Further, Coffey's geo-services expertise will provide a platform of staff and offices through which Tetra Tech can leverage its water and environmental services to support Australia's infrastructure expansion.

    In 2015, TRC Companies (Lowell, Mass.) made two strategic acquisitions, advancing TRC's profitable growth strategy in both the power utility and oil & gas markets. X-Line Inc. (Villa Rica, Ga.), a 40-employee firm, expanded TRC's position in the distribution engineering and design space throughout the Southeast. The second acquisition, Willbros Professional Services (Tulsa, Okla.), was transformational for TRC in that it added a fourth operating and reporting segment, Pipeline & Facilities Services, along with over 850 employees and more than $200 million in revenue from 9 offices throughout the United States. The acquisition of Willbros positions TRC as a leader in end-to-end solutions for oil & gas midstream services from up-front environmental permitting and remediation through pipeline engineering, EPC, construction management, field services, integrity and data management services. TRC has made 11 acquisitions since 2011, all contributing to compounded annual revenue growth of over 15% while growing EBITDA more than 20%.

    Quality solutions provider Intertek Group plc (London) for the acquisition of Illinois-based Professional Service Industries Inc. (PSI) for $330 million. PSI reported revenue of $254 million in 2014 and employs 2,400 people at 87 locations. PSI provides testing and assurance services to commercial and civil construction markets, with a broad service offering including building materials testing, geotechnical services, and property and environmental assurance. PSI was majority owned by private equity firm Olympus Partners. The transaction builds on Intertek's acquisition of Architectural Testing (York, Pa.) for $95 million in December 2013.

    Westinghouse Electric Co. (Pittsburgh, Pa.) for strengthening its position in the environmental industry with the October 2015 acquisition of CB&I Stone & Webster, the nuclear construction and integrated services businesses of CB&I (The Hague, Netherlands). The deal is supporting Westinghouse's growth in decontamination, decommissioning and remediation services; enhancing the company's major nuclear project management and environmental service offerings; and adding to its extensive innovation-driven engineering expertise. The businesses will reside in a new Westinghouse subsidiary, which also will house a new government services business under development. Westinghouse Electric is a group company of Toshiba Corp. Earlier in 2015 Westinghouse and Bechtel Corp. (San Francisco) formed an alliance to provide decontamination, decommissioning, and remediation services to U.S. commercial nuclear power plants.

    Danaher Corp. (Washington, D.C.) for acquiring Pall Corp. (Port Washington, N.Y.) in a $13.8 billion deal. Pall, a leader in filtration, separation, and purification technology, generated $2.8 billion in revenue during fiscal 2014 and "is a highly attractive business with approximately 75% recurring revenues, mid-single-digit organic growth, and a solid margin profile," said Thomas Joyce, Danaher's president and CEO. Subsequently Danaher announced its intention to split into two companies, with one $16.5 billion unit retaining the Danaher name, including the Pall operations and focusing on the life sciences and diagnostics, dental, water quality, and product identification businesses. The other unit, a $6 billion business, will operate as a diversified industrial company.

    Eurofins Scientific (Luxembourg), a global environmental, pharmaceutical and food-testing firm, for its ambitious global and U.S. acquisition campaign in all of its markets. In 2015 Eurofins bought Boston Heart Diagnostics for $140 million, 120-person Wisconsin-based BioDiagnostics, 95-person Toronto-based Experchem Laboratories, Alabama-based Diatherix Laboratories for $50 million, assets of Spectrum Analytical with labs in Agawam, Mass., and North Kingstown, R.I., Ireland-based Biomnis Group for €220 million, a 65% majority stake in Vietnam's 100-person testing firm Sac Ky Hai Dang, two leading environmental labs in Austria, and Norway's Radonlab. Eurofins ends 2015 with about 20,000 staff and 200 laboratories in 39 countries.

    Environmental Resources Management (ERM, London) for its acquisition by investor Ontario's Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) for an enterprise value of $1.7 billion. With gross revenues near $1 billion, ERM is the world's top pure-play environmental consulting firm. ERM employs more than 5,000 people providing environmental, health, safety, risk, social consulting services and sustainability related services from more than 160 offices in over 40 countries and territories to key sectors including oil & gas, mining, power, and manufacturing, chemical and pharmaceutical. ERM is now on their fourth private equity investor, having been PE-owned since 2001, when 3i financed a management buyout of ERM's retiring partners, enabling remaining partners to maintain significant ownership and continue to lead the company and providing capital for growth. By 2011 when Charterhouse acquired its interest in the firm at an enterprise value of $950 million, ERM's 490 partners owned 45% of the firm.

    HDR Inc. (Omaha, Neb.) for its acquisition of Infrastructure Corporation of America (Brentwood, Tenn.), a $130-million firm that performs transportation operations and maintenance services, outsourcing what was traditionally performed in-house at state departments of transportation and the like. ICA provides a comprehensive asset management solution for public agencies with long-term contracts or lump sum/performance-based terms from a sophisticated, fully bonded and capable service provider. With ICA, HDR has strengthened its asset management offerings that will help the company serve clients throughout project life cycles. HDR now employs more than 9,200 staff worldwide.

    Research and program implementation firm Abt Associates (Cambridge, Mass.) for merging with Stratus Consulting (Boulder, Colo.), an environmental research and consulting firm. Abt Associates said that the Stratus Consulting operations would be integrated with its existing environmental practice to form a new Environment and Natural Resources Division led by Joshua Lipton, former president and CEO of Stratus Consulting. The deal expanded Abt's environmental and ecological sciences capabilities and created new opportunities for the growth of its environment and climate change portfolio.

    Engineering, science, and design consulting firm Pennoni (Philadelphia, Pa.) for three major acquisitions in 2015. In March Pennoni bought the assets of Jones-Stuckey (Columbus, Ohio), a civil engineering firm with expertise in bridge and roadway engineering, storm and sanitary sewer design, water resources engineering, environmental services, and structural and construction engineering inspection. In May Pennoni acquired Philip Post & Associates (Chapel Hill, N.C.), a provider of land planning, site design, water/wastewater, and construction inspection services. In July, Pennoni acquired the assets of J2 Engineering (Pensacola, Fla.) a provider of environmental, engineering, construction management, and design-build services.

  • Business Achievement: Information Technology

    ENFOS (San Mateo, Calif.) for a record year in 2015 in which it increased annual revenue by more than 50%. New customer acquisition, customer footprint expansion, and renewals contributed to growth. New customers included Ashland, Crop Production Services (subsidiary of Agrium), Cumberland Farms, and the Defense Logistics Agency, the company's first federal contract. Internationally, ENFOS partnered with Nakai University in Beijing on an agreement to refine and develop methods of environmental management and technical research in China. ENFOS also completed beta testing of E3 with new features designed for the remediation and decommissioning market.

    3E Company (Carlsbad Calif.) for launching the 3EiQ portal that streamlines access to most key 3E Company EH&S regulatory compliance applications, including Ariel WebInsight, ArielLogic, 3E Online, 3ESC Supply Chain Solutions, Authoring on Request, Integrated Content and MSDgen. Launch of 3EiQ coincides with the release of Ariel 9.0 that features a redesigned user experience, robust customization capabilities, expanded analytical functionality, and new content subscriptions for the personal care/cosmetics, food contact, and pharmaceuticals industries.

    WaterSmart Software (San Francisco, Calif.) for major achievements in 2015 including tripling revenue from 2014 to 2015. The company's customer engagement and data analytics platform enables water utilities to educate consumers about water usage and conservation. Due in part to devastating drought, WaterSmart has fielded increasing demand for its cloud software solutions, driving major water savings through partnerships with 50 water utilities across eight states. In March 2015, WaterSmart announced cumulative savings of 1 billion gallons of water by utility customers and by December had surpassed 2 billion gallons of water saved. Utility partners and their customers also avoided 20,000 tons of CO2 emissions. A certified B-Corporation, WaterSmart also rolled out new product capabilities and now caters to multi-family residences and commercial businesses, in addition to helping utility partners derive value from smart water meter deployments.

    RegScan (Williamsport, Pa.) for programming improvements to RegScan One Web Services and for entering into a new content partnership with Intelex Technologies, a leader in web-based management systems that optimize business performance, enable regulatory compliance, and streamline ISO initiatives. The new partnership allows Intelex users to access RegScan One legal registers and audit protocols and have them exported via Web Services to the Intelex platform. With RegScan's current-to-the day content integrated into existing EMIS systems like Intelex, new audiences now have access to RegScan's library of global EH&S regulatory information, and subscribers can create custom legal registers and audit protocols specific to their jurisdictions and facilities. RegScan also launched Applicability Wizard in September 2015, an intuitive auditing feature that can theoretically cut the number of audit questions from 50,000 to as few as 50 by mapping out regulatory requirements based on answers to a series of screening questions, making it easier for users to manage compliance at multiple global facilities.

    Locus Technologies (Mountain View, Calif.) for continuing its strategic shift to configurable Multitenant pure Software as a Service (SaaS) EHS solutions and welcoming new, high profile customers. In 2015 Locus scored record revenue from Cloud software with annual growth up 20%. Locus also achieved a record renewal rate of 99% and signed up new customers including Shell Oil Company, Sempra Energy, Philips 66, Ameresco, California Dairies, Cemex, Frito-Lay, Genentech, Lockheed Martin, PPG Industries, United Airlines and US Pipe & Foundry. Locus also became the largest provider of SaaS environmental software to the commercial nuclear industry; currently over 50% of U.S. nuclear generating capacity uses Locus' flagship product. Locus' configurable Locus Platform gained momentum in 2015 with new implementations in the manufacturing, agricultural and energy sectors, including a major contract with Sempra Energy for greenhouse gas reporting.

    EarthSoft (Concord, Mass.) for a banner year in 2015 thanks to new clients, new contracts, and ongoing product development. EarthSoft's Business Partner Program produced revenues for its partners (AECOM, CH2M, Critigen, ERM, Environmental Standards, and SGS). EarthSoft's EQuIS Online hosting group and EarthSoft's services group (SEO) both posted significant growth. EarthSoft landed a large air project with the South Coast Air Quality Management District in California, and a large WQX project with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. Other new clients in 2015 included Dow Chemical Company, TRC, Klohn Crippen Berger, and Roux and Associates. Canada's Region of Waterloo selected EQuIS for its new Hydrogeological Data Analysis System.

    Aquatic Informatics for sales growth of over 220% for its AQUARIUS WebPortal solution that delivers real-time online access to environmental data and services. Aquatic Informatics was recognized among the fastest growing technology companies, ranking on both Deloitte’s Canadian Technology Fast 50 and the North American Technology Fast 500. Aquatic Informatics launched the availability of its entire AQUARIUS solution suite as a service (SaaS) in 2015 with AQUARIUS Cloud, and the new AQUARIUS Samples is a SaaS solution that simplifies scientific data production workflows, reducing the cost and time to process environmental lab and field sample data. The company says the new additions to the AQUARIUS product suite makes Aquatic Informatics the world-leading provider of integrated water quality and quantity solutions.

  • Business Achievement: International Expansion

    The Vertex Companies Inc. (Weymouth Mass.) earned two high profile rankings in 2015, appearing 35th on ENR's list of Top Construction Management/Program Management firms and sixth on ZweigWhite's Hot Firm List. After beginning operation in Canada in 2014 as VTX Consulting Services in Toronto (joining Vertex's 22 U.S. offices and two Mexico offices), VTX's revenue in Canada grew more than four-fold in 2015. Two noteworthy projects in 2015 included a site remediation project in Ottawa and a large pre-acquisition due diligence portfolio analysis in Ontario. The remediation project involved source removal of subsurface petroleum hydrocarbon soil quality impacts followed by the application of in-situ chemical oxidation and enhanced bioremediation technology. The due diligence project was conducted to provide environmental risk profiles/risk ranking of 243 assets in a four week time-period.

    International engineering and environmental consulting firm Antea Group (Gouda, Netherlands) for significant growth by acquisition in Brazil and France. Antea acquired a 47% interest in Angelbrasil Geologia e Meio Ambiental Ltda (Sao Paulo, Brazil), a provider of environmental services related to soil and groundwater remediation, sustainability and quality, health, safety and environment (QHSE). Angel has more than 30 scientists, engineers and consultants serving global multinational corporations and the industrial and transportation sectors in Brazil. In November, Antea France SAS acquired Groupe IRH Environnement (Paris, France), a €40 million environmental engineering company in air and water sampling and measurement; drinking water and wastewater engineering services; and contaminated soil and groundwater remediation.

    RPS Group, a U.K.-based consulting and engineering firm, for strengthening its U.S. business through continued acquisitions. In February 2015 RPS acquired Klotz Associates, a $26.2 million, 116-employee engineering, planning, and environmental consulting firm with five offices in Texas. At the time RPS said it would add to RPS Group's North American operations, which accounted for one-fifth of RPS's total gross revenue of about $940 million in its latest fiscal year (RPS bought Chicago-based GaiaTech in 2014). In October, RPS acquired Iris Environmental (Oakland, Calif.), a $10 million, 35-person firm managing environmental liabilities and risk primarily for private sector clients in California, particularly technology companies in Silicon Valley.

  • Project Merit: Restoration

    Resource Environmental Solutions LLC (RES, Houston), a leading provider of ecological offsets for projects impacting wetlands, streams and habitats, for its role in the Robinson Fork Mitigation Bank, a watershed-scale stream and wetland restoration project that it says is the largest stream restoration project of its kind in the country, located on a 553-acre mitigation site at the Robinson Fork Watershed, Washington County, Pa. The restoration project encompasses over 30% at the Robinson Fork Watershed. The bank includes streams, wetlands, and additional endangered species benefits in a ecological hot-spot for endangered bat species. Ecological restoration activities focus on the creation of an integrated stream and floodplain system; restoring localized groundwater aquifers; reconnecting floodplains to the water table and streams; and optimizing and diversifying habitat.

  • Project Merit: Recycling

    Korea Environment Corporation (Keco, Incheon, Republic of Korea) for advances in its electrical-electronic equipment and vehicles waste recycling through its ICT-based Eco-Assurance System. Korea’s Eco-Assurance System (EcoAS) has been enforced since 2008 for the life-cycle management or recycling of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (EEE) or e-waste. The program has built the infrastructure to systematically and accurately manage EEE recycling performance using an ICT (information and communication technology) based operation and management system. The ICT system has increased user convenience and led to performance in excess of the annual recycling goal of 4.5kg/ person to 5.09kg/ person in 2015. Improved economic benefits resulting from an increase in the EEE recycling volume instead of using landfill/incineration were estimated at $157 million.

  • Project Merit: Remediation

    WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff (Herndan, Va.) for a minimally intrusive and cost effective clean-up that kept a manufacturing facility operational, saving 75 jobs in a 500-person rural Kansas town. Remediation involved chromium-affected soils underlying the facility to a depth of approximately 30 feet below ground surface, just above unaffected groundwater. The remediation strategy was based on in situ reduction and fixation of hexavalent chromium using the chemical reductant. Bench-scale testing of site soils determined an appropriate reductant dose, demonstrated stability of the resulting trivalent chromium across a wide range of potential geochemical conditions, and showed that significant off-gassing would not occur. The initial phase involved installing a chemical reductant-based passive horizontal barrier between the affected soil and groundwater. The barrier was designed to treat any chromium mobilized during treatment via chemical reductant flooding of surface infiltration galleries. Confirmation sampling showed the remedy was successful in achieving regulatory criteria, and the facility remains in operation.

    AECOM (Los Angeles) for completing remediation and restoration in the wake of the Lac Mégantic, Quebec oil train derailment disaster of 2013. The accident caused explosions and fire that destroyed a portion of downtown, killed 47 residents and created a major environmental disaster. Spilled Bakken Crude oil impacted 38 buildings and municipal infrastructure, soils, and nearby surface water and sediments. Sitewide remediation started December 2013 was completed October 2015. Activity in 2015 included demolition of 32 buildings and a water treatment facility, contaminated soils removal, backfilling with hydroseeded clean materials, rebuilding urban infrastructure, and preparing the site for redevelopment. Soil requiring removal and treatment exceeded 400,000 tonnes; remediated demolition materials were reused; and surface groundwater trenching and recovery wells collected and transferred impacted water to a carbon-based treatment system. AECOM served as program manager and prime contractor to the Town of Lac-Mégantic and Québec Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Climate Change.

    Parsons (Syracuse, N.Y.) for its role in the Onondaga Lake cleanup, one of the largest environmental remediation projects in New York State's history. The Geddes Brook/Ninemile Creek site (part of the larger Onondaga Lake site) had been impacted over the past century by industrial contamination, relocated and channelized by road and bridge construction, and its floodplain habitats degraded by non-native invasive plant species. Parsons remediated and restored 36 acres of streams, wetlands, and floodplains. Over 90,000 plants from 120 native species were planted and over 200 plant species documented, including three state-listed threatened or endangered species. Biodiversity has subsequently increased, including the return of more than 70 fish and wildlife species, notably several rare species categorized as threatened or of special interest by the state.

  • Project Merit: Permitting

    CH2M (Englewood, Colo.) for permitting the Ivanpah solar project of approximately 5.6 square miles for project developer Brightsource. The California Energy Commission is known for being tough on new licenses. This was not only the first concentrating solar power plant but the largest in the world. The three year permitting process was short in light of the eight organized opposition groups. After licensing, CH2M later took on regulatory compliance support for biological, cultural and paleontological resources. One challenge was relocating threatened desert tortoises, which spend most of the year underground. When the USFWS quota of tortoises were found in one-third of the site, CH2M worked with federal agencies to drive a revised biological opinion within 2.5 months (typically 6 months to 1.5 years). The tortoises were successfully relocated and only two mortalities were recorded.

  • Project Merit: Water

    Marstel-Day LLC (Fredericksburg, Va.) for developing a standardized yet tailored approach for an integrated and sustainable water management plan for military installations with inadequate water availability, supply, and infrastructure. The company had previously identified the top five priority Air Force installations requiring plans for sustainable water resources. In 2015 it created the first Water Resource Management and Sustainability Plan for Mountain Home Air Force Base, a DOD participant in the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality Climate Preparedness and Resilience Planning Pilot Studies. The plan includes analysis of nine water challenges with a combination of 20 recommended actionable solutions to ensure water availability and sustainability to meet mission requirements. Marstel-Day is working on Water Resources Management and Sustainability Plans for four additional water restricted military installations.

  • Project Merit: Habitat Protection

    AECOM (Los Angeles) for completing the Environmental Baseline Study (EBS) and ecological assessment for Total E&P Uganda's Project area within the Albertine Graben in early 2015-one of Africa's most important areas for biodiversity. Approximately 70% of the project area is located in the Murchison Falls National Park, which hosts a range of wildlife and attracts tourism. For the challenging 18 month extensive field work and reporting project, AECOM led a global team of environmental and ecological experts in flora and fauna, soils and water resources; project managers from Dubai, Italy, U.K., U.S, Uganda and South Africa; and local Kampala, Uganda experts. The study involved documentary assessment of natural resources such as soil, surface water, groundwater, air quality, noise and ecology-including mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects and birds-and connected the presence of faunal species with various vegetation types.

    Environmental Management and Planning Solutions Inc. (EMPSi, Reno Nev.) for assisting the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in preparing the Fire and Invasives Assessment Tool (FIAT), an innovative GIS and management tool designed to protect and enhance Greater Sage-Grouse habitat in the western United States. The FIAT identifies priority project areas within which wildfire and invasive plants threaten the sage-grouse. FIAT tools include fire suppression, reseeding, and invasive weed treatments. A fast-tracked project, the BLM released final FIAT reports in March 2015. The FIAT became a central element of the BLM and Forest Service's Greater Sage-Grouse land-use plan amendments now being implemented throughout the west. EMPSi helped develop five FIAT reports, which provide habitat management strategies for 107 million acres in Oregon, Idaho, California, Nevada, and Utah.

    Green Sun Rising Inc. (Windsor, Ont.) for providing a 15 kW solar PV system at Sachs Harbour on Banks Island in the Western Arctic- the Northern-most solar energy system in North America. The system is micro-grid connected and reduces diesel generation in the hamlet. The project was written, awarded, installed, inspected and commissioned in four weeks-record time for such a challenging project in the Arctic. Sachs Harbour is the Northern-most community in the Northwest territories. The solar system will generate about 15,000 kWh of electricity per year.

  • Technology Merit: Stormwater

    Tetra Tech (Pasadena, Calif.) for harnessing real-time control systems to manage the movement of stormwater runoff. The company has partnered with TreePeople and the Greater LA Water Collaborative to provide sustainable solutions for water management. In November 2015, the group unveiled an innovative smart cistern system to optimize stormwater capture while also managing torrential El Niño rains. As part of a pilot program, Tetra Tech retrofitted a 1,320-gallon cistern on a Los Angeles home, estimating that annual rainfall of 12 inches would produce 7,000 gallons of water from its 900-square-foot roof. The system has real-time monitoring sensors and controls that detect when rain is expected, predict how much rain will fall, estimate the tank’s capacity, and determine when water needs to be released into a rain garden created on the property. The rain garden allows water to recharge underground aquifers associated with the city’s local water supply. The pilot program is expanding to several locations throughout Los Angeles County.

  • Technology Merit: Water

    American Water (Voorhees, N.J.) for instituting biofiltration at a majority of its surface water treatment plants in the United States in 2015. Most plants use granular activated carbon (GAC) in their filters to reduce unpleasant tastes and odors in the water, but the adsorption capacity of GAC in surface water plants is generally only a few months. In biofiltration, naturally occurring bacteria are encouraged to grow on filter media and can metabolize many organic compounds, including taste and odor-causing compounds, and reduce the GAC replacement period from three or four years to 10 years or more. In the company-wide effort, 22 of American Water’s 32 plants with GAC are in some level of testing: Savings could exceed $4 million a year and negate the need for replacing over 3.5 million pounds of GAC.

  • Technology Merit: Information Technology

    ICF International (Fairfax, Va.) for using its Ecosystem Diagnosis & Treatment (EDT) model to assist the Colville Confederated Tribes Okanogan Basin Monitoring and Evaluation Program (OBMEP) with recovery of ESA-listed salmon and steelhead in the Okanogan River sub-basin, a tributary watershed of the Columbia River. ICF integrated EDT with OBMEP's long-term habitat monitoring to create a platform capable of systematically translating large amounts of empirical data into useful habitat performance metrics. ICF completed the second habitat status and trends analysis using the Okanogan EDT model in 2015, demonstrating that the integrated platform provides an effective tool for meeting Biological Opinion requirements at less than 25% of the cost of other tributary watershed monitoring programs. The Colville Confederated Tribe is using EDT model results to prioritize the allocation of $20 million in annual funding for habitat restoration actions, property purchases, and water rights acquisitions.

    Groundwater & Environmental Services Inc. (GES, Wall, N.J.) for implementing an innovative solution that has nearly halved the cost of the compulsory water quality sampling at a public drinking water system. GES is completing a design/build/operate project consisting of a 900,000-gallon per day public drinking water system for a community in rural Pennsylvania. Recent changes to the state's Surface Water Identification Protocol (SWIP) require daily monitoring of each of the system's three supply wells. The GES solution uses remote-start generators, data logging, and remote monitoring of the data through a web portal. Modified on-site generators power an electric submersible pump in each supply well for the required purge volume while continuously collecting geochemical parameters. Using the same web portal, separate devices remotely monitor water level, precipitation, and stream levels. On-site requirements have been reduced to weekly coliform sampling and periodic equipment inspections while maintaining compliance with all water quality requirements.

    CH2M for Flood Modeller Pro, the company's flood modelling software package, which had its origins in the 1970s and has been improved ever since. The latest generation was released during first quarter 2015 and is part of the Flood Modeller Suite that has more than 25,000 users globally representing public and private sector clients, industry policy makers, and academics. This industry standard software is benchmarked (validated) and adopted by many governments throughout the world, including England's Environment Agency. Flood Modeller Pro provides clients with a flexible and cost-effective range of tools for proactive decisionmaking to help manage the environment and the challenges associated with flood risk. It is suitable for a wide range of engineering and environmental applications, from calculating simple backwater profiles to modelling entire catchments to mapping potential flood risk for entire countries.

  • Technology Merit: Remediation

    TerraTherm (Gardner, MA) for becoming the first thermal remediation company to gain certification of their soil heating system and heating components. Through Intertek, one of the world's largest testing, inspection and certification companies, TerraTherm’s patented heater elements and heating system obtained the Electrical Testing Labs (ETL) Mark, a symbol that dates back to 1896 when Thomas Edison founded ETL to provide assurance to consumers through product performance and safety testing.

    Through attainment of the marks TerraTherm’s In Situ Thermal Remediation (ISTR) system also demonstrated compliance with published safety standards (UL499 and UL1030), allowing more efficient and safe projects with expanded capability to streamline the permitting process often required by the local inspectors and other stakeholders within the communities of TerraTherm’s projects.

  • New Practice Areas

    Marstel-Day LLC (Fredericksburg, Va.) for its innovative Environmental Gaming practice. Based on in-depth analysis of the increasing importance of environmental drivers to private, public, and governmental organizations, Marstel-Day's flexible gaming practice allows clients to explore tactical and strategic responses to a wide range of scenarios, from long-term impacts like environmental events and trends to short-term emergencies like floods and wildland fires. The service includes developing client-specific scenarios involving stakeholder networks, client missions and operations, natural factors, and feedback mechanisms, which are explored in a hosted game to inform creation of robust, adaptive strategies. Marstel-Day has developed pilot scenarios for water shortages and flooding in the Central Plains, deep-water drilling accidents in a climate-altered Arctic, and drought- and wildland fire-threatened electrical infrastructure in California.

    EA Engineering, Science, and Technology Inc. (Hunt Valley, Md.) for a new platform of services around emerging contaminants (ECs). Having secured over $5.5 million in EC investigation and remediation for projects to date, EA has proven that experience in scientific research can be used to launch a new practice area. For over 10 years, EA has conducted scientific research on the safety and toxicology of consumer product constituents, evaluating their potential to cause adverse ecological or human health impacts. In 2015 EA firmly established a practice group in ECs, drawing on scientific research experience to address environmental and public health risk posed by ECs in our nation's water resources. Projects include a $1.7 million remedial action at three locations to address soil and/or groundwater impacted by 1,4 dioxane and other contaminants, and investigating the presence of perfluorinated compounds in groundwater, which has resulted in the installation of drinking water treatment systems and system performance monitoring.

    TRC Companies (Lowell, MA) for its extensive work supporting the decommissioning of coal power plants. The firm provided plant owners with engineering, permitting and construction services for seven projects in 2015. TRC has worked on nearly 20 coal plant decommissioning projects since 2008. In many cases, projects have included supporting the development of new efficient gas turbine power plants, hastening the United States' transition to a cleaner electricity supply and helping achieve reductions of greenhouse gases. Through 2015, TRC supported National Grid in replacing two coal-oil-gas steam turbine generating stations in New York with new gas turbine technology. For these projects, TRC provided health, safety and environmental plans; pre-demolition surveys; plans and specifications; procurement; and construction support services. Altogether 17,000 gross tons of non-ferrous steel were recycled at the two sites, in addition to 2.5 million pounds of copper and 6,000 gross tons of masonry.

    MWH Global (Broomfield, CO) for the launching of a new platform to house its management consulting services called Hawksley Consulting, named after Thomas Hawksley, a 19th Century visionary in the area of public infrastructure. Hawksley Consulting will focus on the water asset management needs of utilities, government agencies, and private companies. Hawksley Consulting provides local solutions to global clients ranging from strategic planning, organizational assessment and financial planning services in the U.S. to predictive analytics solutions and stakeholder engagement services in Australia. Experts also provide guidance to the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the Planning Institute of Australia, the American Water Works Association, the Water Environment Federation and other industry-leading organizations. Hawksley Consulting started 2016 with the acquisition of Burton & Associates (St. Augustine, FL) a financial management services firm experienced in developing financial plans and cost recovery strategies for local governments, adding 17 utility and government financial consultants.


Business Achievement Awards