EBJ News September 6, 2018

September 6, 2018: September Acquisition


Stantec to acquire True Grit Engineering
Stantec (Edmonton, AB) has signed a letter of intent on acquisition for True Grit Engineering (Thunder Bay, Ontario). The 55-person environmental services and infrastructure firm expands Stantec’s presence in northern Ontario. True Grit clients include government, indigenous communities, Hydro One, Resolute Forest Products, and municipalities throughout northern Ontario. The acquisition creates an opportunity to diversify Stantec’s buildings, transportation, water, and mining expertise in northern Ontario. Concentrated in Thunder Bay, True Grit Engineering has regional offices in Sioux Lookout and Welland.


Stantec to acquire UK-Based Peter Brett Associates
Stantec (Edmonton, AB) is expanding its presence in the United Kingdom with the planned acquisition of Peter Brett Associates LLP (PBA, Reading, England). An independent firm of more than 700 engineers, planners, scientists and economists delivering projects in a variety of sectors, PBA has 14 offices across the UK and three in Central Europe. “Regionally, the project landscape is promising with the UK government’s policy to build 300,000 new homes per year, a five-year program to invest £4.4 billion ($7.4 billion CAD) in new and refurbished schools, a robust university upgrading initiative, and a major national investment program in UK infrastructure,” said Gord Johnston, Stantec president and CEO. Of Stantec’s 22,000 team members, more than 2,400 are based in the United Kingdom.


Engineered sand zaps storm water pollutants
Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley have created a new way to remove contaminants from storm water, potentially addressing the needs of water-stressed communities. Using a mineral-coated sand that reacts with and destroys organic pollutants, the researchers have discovered that the engineered sand could help purify storm water percolating into underground aquifers, creating a safe and local reservoir of drinking water. “The way we treat storm water, especially in California, is broken. We think of it as a pollutant, but we should be thinking about it as a solution,” said Joseph Charbonnet, a graduate student in civil and environmental engineering at UC Berkeley. The study appears in Environmental Science & Technology.


KKR to acquire stake in Ramky Enviro of India
Global investment firm KKR will acquire a 60% stake in Ramky Enviro Engineers Limited (REEL, Hyderabad, India) for approximately $530 million, valuing the company at an enterprise value of $925 million. Ramky offers solid and hazardous waste management services, as well as paper, plastic and chemicals recycling and renewable energy generation, notably waste-to-energy processes. REEL has a presence in 20 Indian states, as well as in Southeast Asian, Middle Eastern and African markets. KKR’s acquisition marks the first private equity buyout in the country’s environmental services sector, according to KKR. The deal comes as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration enhances its focus on environmental management through the Swachh Bharat (Clean India) Mission, an initiative to reduce pollution and improve critical sanitation infrastructure to boost living standards in cities, towns and rural villages nationwide.


DOE’s 2017 wind market reports indicate strong installation trends and falling prices
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) released three wind energy market reports in August demonstrating that technology costs and wind energy prices continue to fall. Bigger turbines with longer blades are enhancing wind plant performance, and wind projects built in the past few years have seen capacity factors increase by 79% compared to 1998 to 2001. The average installed cost of wind projects in 2017 was down 33% from the peak in 2009–2010. The 2017 Wind Technologies Market Report, prepared by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, found that the U.S. wind industry installed 7,017 megawatts (MW) of capacity last year, bringing total utility-scale wind capacity to nearly 89 GW. In total, 41 states operated utility-scale wind projects. Texas leads the nation with over 22 GW of wind capacity, while Oklahoma, Iowa, California, and Kansas have more than 5,000 MW. In 2017, wind energy contributed 6.3% of the nation’s electricity supply, more than 10% of total generation in 14 states, and more than 30% in Iowa, Kansas, Oklahoma, and South Dakota.


California legislature passes historic bill to achieve 100% clean energy
The California Assembly has passed Senate Bill 100 (Kevin de Leon) to move California to 100% renewable energy by 2045. This bill would also increase California’s clean energy goals from 50% by 2030 to 60% by 2030, making California the largest global economy to have a goal of moving to 100% clean energy. Meeting California’s greenhouse gas emissions reductions remains a priority, especially in light of California’s recently released fourth Climate Change Assessment, which makes evidence-based predictions that the state is on track for higher temperatures, more wild fires, sea level rise and loss of coastline, and water shortages.


WSP sustains strong performance in Q2 2018
WSP Global Inc. (Montreal, Canada) reported robust Q2 2018 results, with revenues and net revenues of $2,025.9 million and $1,541.1 million, up 18% and 17.1%, respectively, compared to Q2 2017. Consolidated organic growth in net revenues stood at 8.7% for the quarter, spanning all reportable segments and slightly ahead of expectations. The transportation and infrastructure market segment accounted for over 50% of WSP’s net revenues and more than half of its backlog. WSP’s recent acquisition of Louis Berger, “once completed, will enable WSP to reach the objectives of its 2015-2018 Strategic Plan since upon closing and integration of the acquisition, WSP anticipates headcount of approximately 48,000 employees and surpassing the $6 billion mark in net revenues. Our efforts will now focus on the integration of Louis Berger and on finalizing our 2019-2021 Strategic Plan,” said Alexandre L’Heureux, president and CEO of WSP.


NV5 acquires Southeastern infrastructure company Calyx
NV5 Global Inc. (Hollywood, Fla.), a professional and technical engineering and consulting firm, has acquired CALYX Engineers and Consultants Inc. (Raleigh, NC), a 200-person infrastructure and transportation firm. The $36-million acquisition was completed with a combination of cash and stock. With offices in North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, CALYX will position NV5 as a leading firm in transportation and infrastructure services in the Southeast, said Dickerson Wright, chairman and CEO of NV5. “CALYX’s longstanding relationships with state departments of transportation will complement NV5’s current infrastructure services in the Northeast, Florida and the West.”


PRISM Spectrum makes two acquisitions
PRISM Spectrum Holdings LLC (Pittsburgh, Pa.), an environmental remediation and demolition contractor, has made two acquisitions: Copper Environmental Consulting Inc. based in Montana, and Environmental Holdings Group LLC (EHG, Raleigh, NC.). The acquisition decisions are part of a strategic expansion supported by The White Oak Group. Founded in 2006, Copper Environmental has 40 staff and offers environmental site investigation, civil engineering design, water resource management, water treatment design, water treatment operations, project management, regulatory compliance assurance, and construction quality assurance. Environmental Holdings is an environmental hazard abatement and demolition firm ranked among the top five largest abatement firms in the nation by Engineering News Record (ENR). EHG operates seven offices throughout the South.


California index shows emissions down by 11%
The 10th edition of the California Green Innovation Index reveals that in the decade since California passed its first climate law, emissions fell by 11%, even as its economy grew by almost 16% during one of the longest economic expansions in the state’s history. By comparison, the U.S. economy grew by 11.6% during this period, while emissions decreased by 10.2%. The European Union was the only major economy to cut emissions more than California, but its real economic output grew by only 8.8%. “Over the course of a decade, comprehensive, consistent policy in California created market certainty. That drove investment and advanced technology. California is third only to China and the U.S. as a whole in attracting clean technology investment,” said Adam Fowler, director of research at Beacon Economics, the independent research and consulting firm that compiled the Index for publisher Next 10.


Heritage Environmental teams with Zinc Nacional to reclaim zinc oxide
Heritage Environmental Services LLC (Indianapolis, Ind.) and Zinc Nacional (Monterrey, Mexico) are building a state-of-the-art Waelz Kiln facility in the Midwestern United States. The joint venture company, Waelz Sustainable Products LLC (WSP), will provide the metals sector with a proven process for reclaiming zinc oxide from recycled steel dust, a byproduct of the electric arc furnaces operated in steel mills. Zinc oxide is a widely used ingredient in products such as metallic zinc, rubber, ceramics, lubricants, and ointments. WSP plans to hire up to 60 employees during the initial phase of production and an additional 30 employees after expansions are complete. Heritage Environmental has more than 1,600 employees across North and Central America.


EEI launches template for environmental, social, governance, and sustainability reporting
The Edison Electric Institute (EEI) is launching an environmental, social, governance, and sustainability-related (ESG/sustainability) reporting template to benefit electricity customers and to help EEI’s member electric companies provide the financial sector with more consistent ESG/sustainability data. “The electric power industry is leading the way to a clean energy future, having reduced carbon dioxide emissions nearly 27 percent below 2005 levels as of the end of 2017,” said EEI President Tom Kuhn. “The updated template will allow electric companies to present their ESG and sustainability-related efforts in an accurate, timely, and concise manner that is favored by investors.”




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