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2018 EBJ Business Achievement Awards

Congratulations to the 2018 EBJ Business Achievement Awards Winners!

 

 

Environmental Business Journal presents its annual EBJ Business Achievement Awards for outstanding business performance in 2018. Congratulations to the winners, and thanks to all the companies that submitted nominations.

 

All are welcome to attend the official awards ceremony and dinner party as part of Environmental Industry Summit XVII in downtown San Diego at Deck 655 on Wednesday, March 20 from 7-10pm.

 

Environmental Industry Summit XVI runs Wednesday through Friday, March 20-22, 2019.

 

 

BUSINESS ACHIEVEMENT: SMALL FIRMS

GOLD
Environmental Management and Planning Solutions Inc. (Boulder, CO) for increasing gross revenue from $5.6M in 2015 to more than $11M in 2018, and net revenue by 175% in 2018. These increases reflect EMPSi’s entry into the Alaska market with more than $4M of new projects, as well as awards of more than $5M of water resources work for federal agencies. EMPSi’s practice includes environmental compliance and engineering for federal clients nationwide, primarily for land and water management agencies. During 2018 EMPSi was awarded a five-year Blanket Purchase Agreement with BLM worth up to $45 million, as well as blanket purchase agreements with the US Forest Service and the US Bureau of Reclamation. In 2018 the firm was awarded more than $6.5M of fully funded projects, including a $1M compliance project for a commercial mining client in Nevada, and more than $2M of environmental analysis projects for the US Forest Service. The firm also expanded by opening offices in Durango, CO and Fairbanks, AK.

SILVER
Marine Taxonomic Services Ltd. (MTS, San Marcos CA)for 40% growth in 2018 and passing $2 million in revenues. MTS’ treatment and management of aquatic invasive plants in Lake Tahoe contributed significantly to the company’s revenue in 2018. The in the Lake Tahoe basin began in 2012 with the control of aquatic invasive clams, Corbicula fluminea, and has expanded in scope over the years to include the management of invasive plants including Eurasian watermilfoil and Curlyleaf pondweed that alter the aquatic ecosystem by raising the pH of the water, decreasing oxygen, and increasing water temperature. In 2018, MTS established a third office location in South Lake Tahoe, expanding the breadth of their services into aquatic biology. With over 200 days in the water, the team surveyed the entire shoreline of the lake using divers, remote-sensing and LiDAR successfully treating invasive plants and animals all around the lake, contributing nearly $1M in additional revenue.

BRONZE
Mabbett & Associates Ltd. (Glasgow, Scotland) for bucking the Brexit trend and delivering double-digit growth in 2018, increasing sales to £2.2M GBP ($2.9M USD). Mabbett is a UK consulting and engineering firm specialising in environmental and safety services for private and public sector clients. Mabbett plays a leading role in the Scottish Government’s Food Waste Reduction Target programme for SMEs and its Hydro Nation Water Innovation Service to support innovative businesses in the water and wastewater sector. International wins in 2018 included: an energy efficiency programme on behalf of the Caribbean Development Bank for Grenada; environmental work for Thermo Fisher Scientific in Europe and the USA; and the winning of a €1.1M Euro ($1.25M USD) 4-year contract with Bord Bia for sustainability verification services in the Republic of Ireland, where Mabbett is opening a new regional office in Dublin.

HONORABLE MENTIONS
ENFOS Inc. (San Mateo, CA) for a blockbuster year for the enterprise software company in 2018. ENFOS reached an agreement with China’s Nankai University to develop methods of environmental management and technical research and ENFOS was invited to present at the 2018 International Big Data Expo in Guiyang by the city’s mayor. Growth continued in Europe, as ENFOS expanded with the addition of Dow as a customer, and ENFOS took on another major U.S. customer with Koch Industries. In product development, ENFOS released the Beta version of its Remediation BI module, a significant step forward in remediation management technology.

Applied Research and Development Lab (ARDL, Mount Vernon IL) for receiving a $40 million firm-fixed-price contract for environmental services to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Bids were solicited via the Internet, with four received, according to DOD. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of April 2023. ARDL is a woman-owned small business that provides environmental services, consulting and engineering, and program management. Established in Mt. Vernon, Illinois in 1971 by Dr. L.V. Gibbons, ARDL has grown to include a staff of scientists, engineers, and technical specialists, providing chemistry, engineering, environmental sciences, industrial hygiene, safety training and petroleum technology.

BUSINESS ACHIEVEMENT: MID-SIZE FIRMS

GOLD
Greenment Environmental (Shanghai, China) for achieving a year on year growth rate of 40% in 2018, reaching nearly US$20 million in revenues in its 7th year of operation. During 2018, Greenment also established its first office in Europe, in Belgium, and hired its first staff in the US, Rebecca Su, and organized a seminar in Silicon Valley that attracted over 50 participants for a full day of presentations regarding operating environmental risks in China. Greenment Environment also participated in Daimler Group’s global supplier conference in Germany, addressing heads of over 200 auto parts suppliers on the same topic–operating environmental risks in China.

SILVER
SWCA Environmental Consultants (Phoenix AZ) for 14% staff growth in 2018 and 61% revenue growth since 2013. SWCA is a 100% employee-owned firm with 30 offices and nearly 1,000 employees nationwide. In 2018, SWCA named a new CEO and experienced record growth in company size, market diversification, and revenue. Revenue has grown from $72M in 2013 to $117M in 2018. Building on strategic acquisitions in 2014 and 2016, the year 2018 focused on organic growth through expanding in transmission and generation markets, and expanding ecological restoration services. SWCA was able to diversify while maintaining revenue in oil & gas, a mainstay for the firm.

BRONZE
Navarro Research and Engineering Inc. (Oak Ridge, Tenn.) for winning a new contract with for continued environmental compliance and operation services at the agency’s White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Environmental Compliance and Operation 2 (ECO2) is a five-year hybrid, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract, with cost-plus-fixed-fee and firm-fixed-price task orders. The contract has a potential value of $80 million is effective from June 2018 through May 2023. Navarro will provide environmental restoration, multi-media environmental compliance and sustainability program services, as well as general environmental operational support, including overall program management.

 

BUSINESS ACHIEVEMENT: LARGE FIRMS

GOLD
NV5 (Hollywood FL) for significant growth in 2018, as revenues grew more than 26% to $303 million through the nine months ended September 29, 2018, compared with $239 million for the same period in 2017. Net revenues increased 26%. Increases were due to organic growth from NV5’s existing platform, as well as contributions from acquisitions. NV5 expects full-year 2018 gross revenues, including the impact of acquisitions closed through November 2, 2018, to range from $415 million to $430 million, which represents an increase of 25-29% from 2017 gross revenues of $333 million.NV5’s environmental services continue to grow and account for 20% of the firm’s total revenue. The increase in environmental services are a result of organic growth, strategic acquisitions, emergency response, and disaster mitigation services.

SILVER
Tetra Tech (Pasadena, CA) for growth and all-time highs in a number of key financial metrics, as the largest publicly traded company with a majority of its revenue in environmental consulting & engineering. Tetra Tech recorded all-time highs in revenue, net revenue, operating income, and earnings per share in fiscal year 2018, growing its gross revenue by 8% to $2.96 billion and net revenue by 9% to $2.20 billion. The growth was driven by strong, broad-based demand from its clients, led by U.S. state and local government business, which increased more than 30%, compared to fiscal 2017 and has grown organically at a double-digit rate for more than two years. Tetra Tech continues to see strong momentum across its business with record orders booked in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018 that drove backlog up 9% from the previous quarter to an all-time high.

BRONZE
Burns & McDonnell (Kansas City) for double-digit growth in revenue in the environmental group and 1,000 new hires in 2018. The Burns & McDonnell Environmental Services Group helped fuel the strong year for Burns & McDonnell in 2018, as it moved from No. 16 to No. 9 on the Engineering News-Record (ENR) annual ranking of top 500 design firms. A driver of the firm’s integrated client service strategy and organic growth, the environmental group is a single-source provider managing all project phases, specializing in permitting, compliance and remediation. The holistic approach often leads to other engineering and construction projects involving other Burns & McDonnell divisions.Burns & McDonnellmoved from No. 50 to No. 44 on the ENR ranking of Top 200 Environmental firms in 2018 and over the past five years, the Burns & McDonnell environmental practice has seen its revenue grow by $100 million.

 

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

Locus Technologies (Mountain View, CA) for continued growth and innovation in 2018 with a number of achievements in its core business model as a leading provider in multi-tenant Software as a Service (SaaS) EHS software. Locus had record SaaS sales and customer diversification in 2018, pioneered IoT integration with its main platforms, and rolled out new Locus Platform Apps for the EHS industry, taking a leadership role in water quality management software for water utilities. Locus’ flagship Environmental Information Management (EIM) software service continued to grow, adding San Jose Water and Honolulu Board of Water Supply in 2018. Locus’ new LocusDocs service was a key factor in many 2018 wins, including new customers Recology, Orbis, Carollo Engineers, PSEG, CalEnergy; and Campbell Soup Supply Co.

 

 

ESG INFORMATION

IHS Markit (London, UK) for its launch of a online platform for corporate environmental, social and governance (ESG) data and reports. The new reporting platform provides a central source for data like sustainability and climate impact reports, carbon offset program data, etc. Investors, lenders and insurance companies will benefit from access to a central repository covering multiple industries, corporations and geographies.

Edison Electric Institute (EEI, Washington DC) for 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. EEI says the electric power industry has reduced carbon dioxide emissions 27% below 2005 levels and that the 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.

 

INVESTMENT IN INNOVATION

Arcadis (Amsterdam) for collaborating with entrepreneur network Techstars and launching a global partnership to cultivate innovative start-ups to transform the natural and built environment. The “Arcadis City of 2030 Accelerator, Powered by Techstars” focuses on digital technologies and innovative solutions, with applications open in July and the project kicking off in 2019. Arcadis will support selected companies by providing mentors.

 

INTERNATIONAL

Black & Veatch (Overland Park KS), in consortium with DCCD Engineering of the Philippines, for its selection as one of two consultant teams under a five-year Consultancy Services Framework Agreement to assist Manila Water on multiple projects. Manila Water is looking to increase capital spending significantly in 2018-2027, focusing on water and wastewater infrastructure for Metropolitan Manila. Black & Veatch first worked in the Philippines in 1967 on a sewerage master plan for Manila commissioned by the World Health Organization.

Stantec (Edmonton, Canada) for its contract as a key provider of technical assistance on international development projects under a new framework contract with EuropeAid, the European Commission’s directorate general for international cooperation and development. Stantec secured a role in two segments of Framework Contracts: as leader of one of the consortia selected for Lot 1, Sustainable management of natural resources and resilience, with sub projects worth up to €125 million; and a consortium member in Lot 2, Infrastructure, sustainable growth and jobs, with projects spanning the water and energy transport infrastructure markets, potentially totaling €155 million.

Gradiant Corporation (Boston MA, Chennai, India), a provider of solutions for industrial wastewater treatment and desalination, for the establishment of a new Indian subsidiary following its recent growth in commercialization of products in the region. Gradiant India Pvt. Ltd. will provide zero liquid discharge (ZLD) and water footprint reduction for textile processors, dyestuff manufacturers, pharmaceutical companies, and other industrial facilities. Gradiant India will contribute local leadership, sales and service personnel, but product development and engineering support will remain with the parent, Gradiant Corporation, ensuring focus on in-country customer needs while centralizing innovation and intellectual property development.

 

NEW PRACTICE AREAS

The Phylmar Group (Los Angeles) for launching Phylmar Academy with a new model for the development of online training in workplace and environmental safety and health. In collaboration with Nike, Phylmar Academy created a 1 ½ hour online Culture of Safety training, replacing expensive in-person training. Nike requires successful completion of the online course by Nike safety managers and safety managers of all of its suppliers. Nike is willing to share their assessment tool, allowing Phylmar Academy to offer the course to anyone, anywhere and Phylmar Academy is now offering customized online training programs to clients incorporating animation, video, and virtual reality.

EA Engineering, Science, and Technology (Hunt Valley MD) for a new tactical initiative to expand its reach into the wastewater and water treatment market. EA has made progress in increasing its water/wastewater business line revenues, advancing the practice’s geographical footprint, raising the company’s private industry market share, and gaining synergistic impact for other business lines. EA added several nationally recognized experts in the design and operation of industrial wastewater treatment and high-purity water systems for a wide range of manufacturing facilities to its staff. In November, EA completed its strategic acquisition of EnviTreat, a specialized laboratory testing and consulting company that uses respirometry to determine both the aerobic and anaerobic biodegradability of material that EA believes can be applied to remediation.

Arcadis (Novi MI) for the 2018 launch of a practice area for Augmented Reality (AR) to deploy AR technology on environmental projects. AR technology superimposes digital information in a user’s view of the real world, allowing the merging of the physical and digital worlds. While data, applications, and contacts were previously locked in your computer or phone, AR places them in your environment, on demand. We are using AR to deliver enhanced value to our clients in multiple ways. On remote sites Arcadis is using AR to connect staff in the field with experts in the office. For design projects, AR is creating virtual walkthroughs of design plans before they are constructed, and for projects with complex groups of stakeholders AR illustrates underground conditions on remediation projects, allowing stakeholders to experience the subsurface geology, groundwater flow, and contaminant plumes. The practice began at the beginning of 2018 and now consists of a team of over 20 trained staff plus an additional 20 staff who are implementing AR services on projects, a variety of headsets and hardware, and over 50 projects across Arcadis’ environment, water, and infrastructure business lines.

Burns & McDonnell (Kansas City) for its new approach to groundwater remediation projects known as environmental sequence stratigraphy (ESS). This geology-focused approach to groundwater remediation has been embraced by the U.S. EPA as an emerging best practice and is now the standard for the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC) contaminated groundwater programs. ESS allows contaminated sites to be cleaned up faster and for remediation practitioners, ESS offers a more accurate way to determine the nature and extent of contamination, and reduces the uncertainties related to groundwater contamination. Geology defines the subsurface “plumbing” that is the primary control on contaminant migration, and ESS methodology focuses on stratigraphy to map out the subsurface plumbing. Burns & McDonnell co-authored the EPA technical paper Best Practices for Environmental Site Management: A Practical Guide for Applying Environmental Sequence Stratigraphy to Improve Conceptual Site Models on how to apply the geologic principles of sequence stratigraphy to improve conceptual site models for complex contaminated groundwater sites.

ICF (Sacramento CA) for establishing a new Fisheries and Aquatic Science Practice in 2018. ICF fisheries scientists conduct applied research in the lab and field, ecosystem modeling and technical analyses of endangered fish in complex and contentious western water ecosystems to help inform and develop best management practices mandated through state and federal Endangered Species Acts. The team works collaboratively with state and federal agencies, public water agency stakeholders, and non-profits to design studies, modeling, and interactive web-based apps/tools that aid real-time water management decisions, assessments of climate change and water quality impacts to ESA listed species and development of effective restoration plans the practice aims for 25-40% revenue growth over the next 3 years.

West Yost Associates (Davis CA) for launching new services in Operations Technology and Cybersecurity (OTC) to new clients, existing municipal clients, and into new geographic territories. New services offered include: Cybersecurity/Vulnerability Assessments; Operations Technology Optimization; Cybersecurity; Resiliency Planning; SCADA Master Planning; and Operations Technology Detailed Design and Implementation.AWWA’s 2018 State of the Water Industry report noted that cybersecurity made a dramatic jump from number 26 on their utility-managers-issue list in 2017 to number 13 in 2018, with 40% of respondents rating it important and 27% deeming it critically important. West Yost’s new service team increased staffing level and revenue 50% in 2018,serving three new clients in three states outside of its core geographic area.

Mabbett & Associates Ltd. (Glasgow UK) for its Process Safety Division. Mabbett is on track to deliver revenue-income of £365k GBP ($465k USD) for the financial year ending May 31, 2019. New services include COMAH, DSEAR and Reliability Engineering, and training courses, allowing Mabbett to access new client markets in distillery, pharmaceutical and life sciences, and taking the small Scotland-based firm with U.S. roots to Norway, Belgium and Poland.

HANA Resources, Inc. (Lake Forest CA), an industry leader in utilizing remote sensing to detect changes in vegetation on a habitat landscape scale, for pioneering its Plant Health Assessments and Plant Species Recognition services with a patented and proprietary technology. HANA is a full-service multidisciplinary environmental consulting firm and offers a range of geospatial services that help clients with the collection, analysis, presentation and storage of spatial data, utilizing RGB, thermal, and radiometric data sources to undertake complex spatial data analysis and modeling tasks. Monitoring data is presented in easy to interpret reports so environmental managers can make timely, informed decisions, while ensuring environmental compliance.

 

INVESTMENT: NEW FACILITIES

SECUR (Sewickley PA) for launching an oil & gas waste materials management facility in Friendly, WV for the proper transport and disposal of NORM/TENORM. Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) and Technologically Enhanced Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (TENORM) are released with produced water during fracking. SECUR is a private, asset-based provider of transportation, packaging, technical services and waste management for hazardous and radioactive wastes. SECUR now employs a certified health physicist on-site to oversee material handling, all staff have OSHA HAZWOPER training and the facility features a WVDEP-certified laboratory to perform same-day analysis of materials as well as a private rail spur.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: INFORMATION

ERM (Walnut Creek CA) for the global deployment of Nexus by ERM, a technology platform designed to streamline and enhance how ERM delivers projects to provide faster, better and safer outcomes for our clients. ERM has used project-specific robust data management and visualization tools for years but in Nexus, ERM invested in globally-consistent and configurable approaches to collecting, managing, visualizing and reporting data while creating robust data assets for our clients and a toolkit to support decision-making and stakeholder engagement. After ERM’s Design Thinking workshops in late 2017, the firm developed the end-to-end solution for Site Investigation & Remediation and it reports rapid progress on the development of Nexus by ERM for its M&A service line with global deployment planned for early 2019.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: REMEDIATION

Cascade Thermal (Bothell WA, formerly TerraTherm) for the completion of an In Situ Thermally Enhanced Bioremediation project at a Class 2 Inactive Hazardous Waste Disposal Site under NYSDEC’s State Superfund Program. The facility was used in the production of enamels, insulating varnishes, and other resins for coatings and adhesives. Cascade Thermal’s Thermal Conductive Heating (TCH) heaters targeted soils impacted from ground surface to 15ft bgs and heated the treatment zone to an average temperature of 35°C. Air Injection Wells were used to inject hot, oxygen-rich air into the subsurface, fueling bioremediation, and the majority of remediation was anticipated to occur in-situ by biodegradation. Optimizing and quantifying this mass destruction required regular monitoring of O2, CO2, and CH4 at extraction locations to ensure healthy colonies in the subsurface and adjustments to local injection and extraction rates to keep the biota active.

Terradex (Palo Alto CA) for 2018 EPA validation of its technology and practice development in mapping, monitoring and alerts on at-risk sites, 18 years in the making. Terradex has developed three web technology services: LandWatch for monitoring and alerting to at-risk land activities when institutional or engineering controls are in place; Dig Clean for providing advisories to excavators through the 811 system; and WhatsDown to allow discovery of environmental residuals used by the utility industry to inform field workers of environmental hazards. Terradex collects and aggregates publicly available land activity data, then maps, screens and alerts clients and at-risk parties. USEPA’s 2018 report “Use of Advanced Monitoring Technologies and Approaches to Support Long-Term Stewardship” catalogued multiple methodologies Terradex developed since 2002 with 6 out 8 case studies that are Terradex projects, setting a new bar for legacy management.

Ivey International Inc. (Surrey BC) and Burns McDonnell (St. Louis MO) for applying the Ivey-sol surfactant technology to enhance the extraction of a combined of DNAPL (CT – Carbon Tetrachloride) and LNAPL (Diesel) impacted soil and groundwater at an active grain elevator site near St. Louis MO. The existing duel phase extraction (DPE) system was realizing diminishing rates of mass recovery after 7 years of O&M of $100,000 USD/year. The collaboration resulted in the design and application of a pilot-scale site application that yielded favorable contaminant mass removal. The full-scale site-wide surfactant enhanced extraction (SEE) remediation rapidly removed 98% of the source zone CT contamination comprised of DNAPL, dissolved, and sorbed phases, and 100% of the observed LNAPL, achieving risk based clean-up targets for the site.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: AIR QUALITY

SOIL-THERM Equipment Inc. (Agoura Hills CA) for building two small ‘direct fire’ extraction oxidizer systems for the burgeoning cannabis industry. As cannabis legalization and consumption continues to grow throughout the U.S. and Canada, nuisance odors and VOC generation is beginning to cause problems for permitting production facilities by Air Pollution Control Districts. In most cases (even dorm rooms), regular cannabis odors can be controlled by large filters and fans in controlled grow facilities. However, cannabis oils are now routinely extracted using butane, propane and other VOCs to condense the resins for use in edibles. SOIL-THERM’s new oxidizer systems has a small footprint and achieved Antelope Valley APCD permit approval, allowing the facility to legally process up to 240 lbs/hr extracted liquids at the first major cannabis facility in LA County.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: PFAS

AECOM (Chelmsford MA) for developing an on-site technology that destroys per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) compounds in waters and waste streams. Commercially available treatment technologies typically transfer PFAS from water and concentrate it to filter media or other waste streams, requiring offsite disposal and management, retaining legacy and associated liability. In 2018, AECOM designed, constructed, and demonstrated DE-FLUORO™, which utilizes electrochemical oxidation to destroy PFAS in water with a proprietary, durable, low-cost electrode that can be manufactured in different forms for different applications. AECOM’s demonstration project treated eight real-world PFAS-impacted liquids, destroying PFAS mass in liquids containing PFAS concentrations up to 10,000s ppb. The team is pilot testing DE-FLUORO™ at multiple DoD sites under grants awarded by the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program and the U.S. Air Force Board Agency Announcement.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: WATER SUPPLY

Jacobs (Dallas) for developing a first-of-its-kind sustainable water supply solution for Lee County Utilities in southwest Florida, combining new and existing large-scale treatment technologies to process water from three different aquifers. The new 14-million-gallons-per-day facility replaces an aging lime softening plant and is fed by 34 raw water wells that pump water from three different aquifers—fresh water from 14 surficial aquifer wells and 12 sandstone aquifer wells, and brackish water from eight new Floridian aquifer wells. The plant includes a reverse osmosis system for desalinating brackish well water, paired with an innovative ion exchange system to remove iron, hardness and organics from a surficial aquifer fresh water; and fresh water blending using a third aquifer source, degasification, disinfection and finished water chemical addition. The plant that increases the County’s water supply flexibility and reliability while reducing operational costs by as much as 60 percent, supplying 30,00 homes and businesses, including the Southwest Florida International Airport and Florida Gulf Coast University.

 

TECHNOLOGY MERIT: SMART CITIES

Jacobs for extending its ambitious Aurangabad Industrial Smart City project in 2018. AURIC (Aurangabad Industrial City) is one of the first smart, green cities planned to promote a healthy quality of life and spur India’s industrial revolution while embracing the region’s rich cultural past. In 2015, Jacobs began serving as the program manager, the completed plans for which already include a transit-oriented and walkable township, water and energy conservation, renewable power sources and a city command and control center, including the completion of the 25,000-square-foot, LEED Gold Certified AURIC City Hall in 2018. With a contract extension signed in 2018, Jacobs will continue integrating converging technologies across infrastructure to harness benefits provided by Internet of Things – enabled solutions, including a smart grid, smart traffic management and energy-efficient smart housing with high-speed connectivity. Over 60 percent of the total land has been utilized for industrial purposes, while 40 percent is for residential, commercial, institutions, open spaces and social-cultural amenities. The city will also treat its wastewater – meeting approximately 42 percent of water needs through recycled water. As the city expands into a major manufacturing region, it expects to help generate direct employment for over 330,000 people.

 

PROJECT MERIT: IT

Envirosite (Shelton CT, an ADEC Innovation) for the Open Environmental Data (OED) Platform which was developed to enable environmental screening innovation across city, county, municipality, and state levels. The product empowers decision-making using environmental data, giving subscribers an in-depth look into information surrounding environmental contamination or hazardous materials that could impede the economic development of a region. In 2018, Envirosite together with Smart and Sustainable Action Association collaborated with the Broome County, New York Department Planning to use the OED platform to create a specialized mapping system, identifying and marking current and prior contamination sites at parks within the county, providing opportunities for community learning, and health-related action and incident prevention.

 

PROJECT MERIT: NUCLEAR MANAGEMENT LEADERSHIP

Mid-America Conversion Services (MCS, Lexington KY) for achieving full capacity at two major uranium conversion plants in 2018 with all seven production lines up and running at full capacity for the first time in four years. MCS is a joint venture led by Atkins Nuclear Secured (an SNC-Lavalin Group company), with JV partners Westinghouse and Fluor. In Lexington, KY, MCS manages the Depleted Uranium Hexafluoride (DUF6) Conversion Facilities at DOE sites near Paducah, KY, and Portsmouth, OH, converting DOE’s inventory of DUF6, produced by the former Paducah and Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plants, to a more stable uranium oxide form for reuse, storage, and/or transportation and disposition. In 2016 MCS was awarded the contract and assumed operational responsibility for both plants and cylinder yards when the Paducah plant was only partially operational and the Portsmouth plant was entirely shutdown.

 

PROJECT MERIT: ZERO WASTE LEADERSHIP

Raytheon (El Segundo CA) for achieving TRUE Platinum Zero Waste Certification at its 4-million square foot aerospace facility in El Segundo, Calif. Total Resource Use and Efficiency (TRUE) certification requires that sites divert a minimum 90% of waste from landfill and incineration.Upstream, the site partners with suppliers like Staples, Keurig, and Kimberly-Clark to redesign processes and promote environmentally preferable purchasing and source reduction. The site has built strong employee culture through hands-on training, employee fairs, and a network of advocates, and engages the community through outreach events, donations, and volunteer opportunities. Downstream, the site collaborates with its waste hauler, recyclers, and non-profit organizations to optimize success in ever-changing waste commodities market.

 

PROJECT MERIT: WATER QUALITY

Brown and Caldwell (Walnut Creek CA) for landing a major contract to provide program management services for Portland Water Bureau’s $500 million Bull Run Filtration Project. Triggered by traces of Cryptosporidium in the water supply and revocation of PWB’s treatment variance by the Oregon Health Authority, the project involves the design and construction of a new water treatment system, including a filtration plant with 160 million gallons per day capacity. Brown and Caldwell will lead pilot testing and serve as program manager and the team includes water quality specialist Confluence Engineering Group. Following pilot testing and design, construction is expected to start in late 2022, with the new facility operational by October 2027.

 

PROJECT MERIT: REMEDIATION

Jacobs and its subcontractor Cascade Thermal for the completion of the Area 1 In-Situ Thermal Treatment (ISTT) remediation at the Velsicol Chemical Superfund Site in St. Louis, Michigan. An ongoing threat to residents and natural resources, nearly 60,000 pounds of contaminants – including chlorinated solvents, specialty chemicals and petroleum products – were removed from the subsurface by heating the treatment zone to 212° F. Contaminants were safely captured and processed in an above ground treatment system consisting of a thermal oxidizer, acid-gas scrubber and activated carbon technologies.

 

PROJECT MERIT: ENVIRONMENTAL RESTORATION

Jacobs for the Windara Reef shellfish restoration project in South Australia. In a partnership between The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the Australian Government, South Australian Government, Yorke Peninsula Council, RecFish SA and University of Adelaide, the restored shellfish reef includes improved water quality (due to the filtration powers of oysters), an increase in fishery productivity, higher biodiversity and new opportunities for recreational fishing. Serving as the lead engineer for TNC, Jacobs developed the numerical modeling and the engineering design for the construction of the 20-hectare Stage 2 reef expansion. Shellfish reefs once occurred naturally in bays and estuaries along Australia’s southern coastline but have largely disappeared due to exploitation. The Stage 2 construction of the reef was completed in December 2018, with more than seven million juvenile Australian Flat Oysters laid on top of the reef base, many pre-seeded onto recycled oyster shells by local oyster farmers and hatcheries.

 

PROJECT MERIT: BROWNFIELD REDEVELOPMENT

Jacobs for the Avenue Remediation and Landscaping Project in East Midlands, U.K. Almost 20 years in the making, Jacobs, with client Homes England, VSD Avenue and Turner and Townsend, completed restoration of heavily polluted industrial land at the former Avenue Coking Works in East Midlands. One of the most complex remediation projects in the U.K., the remediation transformed 98 hectares into a place that is now enjoyed by the community and wildlife. Closed in 1992, the site left a legacy of derelict plant and heavy pollution, including open tar lagoons, waste tips containing asbestos and contamination of the underlying soils, groundwater and adjacent river. Conventional solutions to the huge pollution issues were unsuitable, so the project team used a combination of techniques such as ex-situ bioremediation, screening and thermal desorption. The restored landscape now provides a development platform with space for almost 500 new homes, and 70 hectares of open public space incorporating a sustainable drainage system, high quality community sports facilities, multi-user trails, woodland, and new habitats for wildlife.

 

PROJECT MERIT: WATER

Stantec (Edmonton, Canada; previously MWH) for becoming the sole strategic planning partner for Yorkshire Water (Bradford, UK) in a deal worth £50 million. Stantec is already preparing supply chain arrangements and contracts for the asset management plan (AMP7) period 2020-2025. The new seven-year contract will run January 2018 to March 2025, with the potential to extend by five years. Services will include driving innovation in the approach to resolving risk, exploiting new technology, partnership working and use of markets. Yorkshire Water’s partnering arrangements throughout AMP7 involve an investment of around £1.5 billion.

 

PROJECT MERIT: AIR QUALITY

Ducon Environmental Systems, a division of Ducon Technologies Inc. (New York), for a major new contract to supply air pollution control equipment designed to mitigate environmental impacts of mining for lithium, and to start becoming a key supplier to the mushrooming lithium-ion battery industry, which is forecast to grow 15-20% a year to 2022. Ducon will supply a combination of technologies, including advanced wet electrostatic precipitator equipment designed to remove sub-micron particles and acid mist from the exhaust flue gas generated while processing lithium-containing ores.

 

PROJECT MERIT: WASTE MANAGEMENT

Arcadis (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) for completing a plan to help transform waste collection in New York City using its Commercial Waste Zones plan developed for New York City’s Department of Sanitation. Under an $8-million contract, the Arcadis-led team developed a framework based on more than a year of rigorous analysis of the commercial waste sector. The firm said it combined advanced data analytics with an intimate understanding of local challenges to lay the foundation to transform how New York City experiences the ubiquitous waste on the street and waste truck traffic.

 

PROJECT MERIT: NATURAL RESOURCES MANAGEMENT

ICF for conducting an independent evaluation process of restoration actions completed by the City of Portland, focusing on habitat potential for salmonids in the context of an urban environment and future climate uncertainty. The City is the first to seek Salmon Safe certification, and has implemented numerous aquatic, riparian, and stormwater restoration actions throughout its urban watersheds. ICF engaged a multi-party process to incorporate empirical data, spatial analysis, expert knowledge, and mathematical modeling into a holistic evaluation of city-wide aquatic habitat restoration actions, utilizing a spatially-explicit ecosystem model to evaluate impacts of completed and planned restoration under current and future conditions. The City is incorporating the results into their FEMA floodplains biological opinion and Stormwater System Plan to align built and natural green infrastructure investments to benefit salmonids.

Resource Environmental Solutions (RES, Houston) for the Terrebonne Biodiversity and Resiliency Project on the Mississippi for BHP. This investment improves the degraded state of natural infrastructure by restoring 125 wetland acres, including creating 2.25 miles of marsh terraces, planting 35,000 bald cypress and conducting invasive species management. Benefits include carbon sequestration, improved water quality (phosphorus/nitrogen reductions), enhanced biodiversity, and community awareness via planting events and updates.

Burns & McDonnell for opening the first approved conservation bank in the United States to protect the Indiana bat and northern long-eared bat. The 1,300-acre Chariton Hills Conservation Bank is also the first conservation bank in Missouri. The bats inhabit caves and forests in the eastern and midwestern U.S. Upon emergence from hibernation, the Indiana and northern long-eared bats migrate to establish summer maternity colonies in suitable habitat throughout northern Missouri, southern Iowa and western Illinois. Preservation and enhancement of this bank property presents a significant opportunity to benefit the species with conserved summer foraging and roosting habitat. The Chariton Hills Conservation Bank will be protected in perpetuity by a conservation easement held by the Missouri Conservation Heritage Foundation.

Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources for the Gulf State Park Enhancement Project that improved public access, improved Alabama’s economy through sustainable tourism, cooperative development, and a dose of southern hospitality. The project is enhancing Gulf State Park’s 6,150 acres, biodiversity, and educational opportunities. This $140 million project included a Master Plan; The Lodge at Gulf State Park, a Hilton Hotel; Dune Restoration; a trail network of 28 miles; more than 40 new interpretive signs; 2 new Pedestrian Bridges; an Interpretive Center; and a Learning Campus. The Interpretive Center has been certified as the first FORTIFIED commercial building in the world and is pursuing the Living Building Challenge, the world’s most rigorous environmental certification system with only 21 certified buildings. The Lodge is the second FORTIFIED commercial building and is also seeking LEED Gold and SITES platinum certifications. The Learning Campus is seeking LEED Silver and FORTIFIED certifications.

Environmental Management and Planning Solutions Inc. (EMPSi, Boulder CO) for an invasive plant management plan at national parks. Invasive plants are being detected and becoming established in national parks at an increasing rate, threatening the integrity of the natural ecosystems the National Park Service (NPS) is charged with protecting. To address this issue, Redwood National Park and Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area developed an Invasive Plant Management Plan and Environmental Assessment (EA) and conducted Endangered Species Act (ESA) compliance. The project involved extensive collaboration between multiple NPS park units and divisions, and several US Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA Fisheries offices. The project required numerous creative approaches because the Invasive Plant Management Plan and EA addressed tools and techniques that would be applied at two different National Parks. ESA compliance was conducted through close coordination between the NPS, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and EMPSi. The three entities worked together during this process [incorporating responsibilities under both Section 7(a)(l) and 7(a)(2) of the ESA] to provide a “conservation framework” for the NPS. This conservation program will enable the NPS to conduct conservation and recovery actions associated with the invasive plant management program in a more efficient manner that will be more effective in both the short and long term.

Marstel-Day, LLC (Fredericksburg VA)for creating a transformational impact investing framework and financing options for National Park infrastructure. Marstel-Day is working collaboratively with the National Park Foundation (NPF) and National Park Service (NPS) to identify projects that demonstrate park infrastructure priorities, leverage public-private partnerships, attract outside investment, enhance long-term operational efficiency and create cost savings for NPS. National Park holdings include approximately 84.4 million acres of land; four million acres of water; 43,000 miles of shoreline; and 21,000 buildings. Robust park infrastructure is a mission-critical requirement for meeting increasing visitor demand and enhancing the quality of the visitor experience in NPS’s next century of park management and stewardship, yet the NPS faces over an $11B backlog in deferred maintenance. In 2018, this project explored infrastructure financing opportunities including both built and natural infrastructure and concluded with a policy and legal framework, as well as three NPS demonstration cases marrying high-impact projects with potential alternative financing models.

Resource Environmental Solutions (RES, Houston) for pairing mitigation and land donation at Maurepas Swamp. RES sees every mitigation opportunity is a chance to magnify the overall gains for a regional ecosystem. The Maurepas Swamp has been in decline since the 1930s when the area was heavily logged for cypress timber. Diversions and facilitated drainage increased stagnation of the swamp areas within the Lake Maurepas Basin. The lack of freshwater inflow over time has decreased the nutrient load and hampered the growth of forested habitats. This PRM project mitigated for the unavoidable impacts from a new pipeline in Eastern Louisiana, within a Wildlife Management Area (WMA) managed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Restoration and preservation under the PRM covered enhancing 485 acres of bottomland hardwood habitat and 67 acres of cypress/tupelo swamp and rehabilitating 85 acres of cypress/tupelo swamp. Stakeholder engagement supported restoration goals and included a donation by RES of 6,000 acres for inclusion within the Maurepas Swamp WMA.

 

PROJECT MERIT: SOLID WASTE

Korea Environment Corporation (K-eco, Seo-gu, South Korea) for the accomplishments of its Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) scheme. In 2018 K-eco increased recycling capacity and created economic value from recycling based on the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) scheme. Since introducing the EPR scheme in 2003, K-eco has reduced Korea’s greenhouse gas emissions by 7 million CO2 tons with the recycling 20 million tons of waste; reduced or replaced the cost of landfilling and incineration and created recycled items with an economic value of KRW 5,388.8 billion while creating 14,900 new jobs.

WIH Resource Group (Phoenix AZ) for conducting a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis for The City of Richland, WA for the possible conversion of its solid waste & recycling collection truck fleet from diesel-powered to compressed natural gas. As a result of the alternative fuels fleet conversion feasibility study, the related cost-benefit analysis, and the findings of the report, the City is electing to convert its fleet based on the availability of grant funding opportunities to offset much of the capital costs for the fueling station infrastructure and new trucks.

 

PROJECT MERIT: REMEDIATION

Cascade Environmental and its TerraTherm technologies (now Cascade Thermal) for successfully treating 87,008 m3 of soils contaminated with dioxins from the use Agent Orange at the Danang International Airport (DIA) in Vietnam. Agent Orange contained dioxins such as 2,3,7,8-tetrachloro-dibenzodioxin. Dioxin is very difficult to treat because it is non-volatile, boils at temperature above 350°C, and does not decompose at ambient temperatures. TerraTherm was contracted by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in partnership with the Vietnamese Ministry of National Defense to implement its In Pile Thermal Desorption (IPTD ®) technology. The treated soils are being used as clean fill to expand the airport.

GZA (Norwood MA) for its major Manufactured Gas Plant cleanup project along the Gloucester waterfront. The project began in 2010, when GZA in its role as lead engineering consultant for the team that included National Grid, Anchor QEA and Charter Construction was commissioned to perform a preliminary site investigation. The former plant location had become a busy commercial and industrial location since its closing decades earlier. The team dredged the harbor, excavated coal tar contaminated soil, drove piles and poured specially engineered concrete for new retaining walls and environmental protection, all done during the worst New England winters in recent memory.

 

PROJECT MERIT: OCEAN CLEANUP

The Ocean Cleanup for deploying its $20 million system designed to clean up the much-publicized 1.8 trillion pieces of trash floating in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. The system was designed by the nonprofit Ocean Cleanup, which was founded in 2013 by then 18-year-old Dutch inventor Boyan Slat. The Ocean Cleanup now employs 80 engineers and researchers, and the foundation is headquartered in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. The floating boom system, with the help of dozens of more booms, is expected to clean up half of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch within the first five years. Each boom will trap up to 150,000 pounds of plastic per year as they float along the currents between California and Hawaii. TOC is supported by some heavy hitters in the tech industry, including Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal and Marc Benioff, the chief executive of Salesforce.

 

PROJECT MERIT: STORMWATER

Mead & Hunt (Port Orange FL) and the City of Cocoa Beach FL for implementing the Cocoa Beach-Minutemen Causeway Improvements project as part of its Stormwater Master Plan. Stormwater capital projects are focused on low impact development (LID) as a means of reducing storm runoff volume and pollutants, while protecting the barrier island freshwater aquifer against saltwater intrusion. Joanie Regan, City Stormwater Program Director, managed the five grant programs that contributed the funds for construction of the Minutemen Causeway and Mead & Hunt managed construction, reducing pollutants, addressing flood risk, infrastructure integrity and sustainability, as well as attracting new business to the area.

Burns & McDonnell for developing a dual-purpose solution to remove high selenium levels from Big Canyon Creek in California during dry weather and to treat transportation-related pollutants during rains. The solution allowed low selenium, dry-weather flows to bypass high selenium groundwater seeps. During wet weather, stormwater is directed to a large subterranean treatment wetland planted with native vegetation and incorporated into the creek’s flood plain and the area’s network of recreational trails. This cost-effective, natural solution dramatically reduced pollutant levels in the creek and enabled the city to restore 6 acres of degraded habitat to natural conditions, which also has contributed to improved water quality.

 

PROJECT MERIT: RESTORATION

SHN (Eureka CA) for the restoration of the historic Town of Scotia. After a much-publicized hostile takeover of the Pacific Lumber Company in 1986, many were concerned that the historic Town of Scotia would be lost forever, becoming an amusement park or retirement development as has occurred with other old company towns. After corporate reorganization, the Town of Scotia LLC contracted SHN as their primary engineering and environmental consultant, to restore early 1900s utilities and roads infrastructure to 21st century standards: all while keeping water and sewer systems “on” for residents, maintaining the town’s historical aesthetic and improving stormwater drainage and drinking water quality. One construction innovation was to limit surface disturbance and stormwater runoff impacts by horizontal directional drilling (HDD). HDD allowed pipelines to be installed under a log pond and under Highway 101, which in turn allows on-going energy savings by decreased pumping.

 

SOCIAL CONTRIBUTION: GOVERNMENT PARTNERING

SIA Solutions LLC (Alexandria VA), for advocating the adoption of Intergovernmental Support Agreements (IGSAs) that allow installations to partner with State or local governments on common facilities. As the Department of Defense (DoD) continues to adjust to uncertain budget priorities and funding shortages, military installations are looking for ways to reduce costs while retaining and enhancing capabilities critical to their missions. IGSAs allow partnerships on grounds keeping, refuse collection, animal control, and bulk supply purchase agreements. The resulting cost savings and efficiencies are now encouraging military and civic leaders to pursue broader partnership initiatives that can have far-reaching positive impacts on the environment, including natural resource management, ecological monitoring, environmental stewardship, and energy and water conservation and resiliency projects. Recent examples: include Fort Detrick’s partnership with Frederick County and solid waste, and Fort Benning and Auburn University’s forest monitoring partnership. Leveraging IGSAs has saved the Army over $8 million a year across thirty IGSAs.

 

SOCIAL CONTRIBUTION: GIVING BACK

SWCA Environmental Consultants (Phoenix AZ) for maintaining a tight-knit culture of employee ownership and of giving. In 2018, SWCA broadened community outreach with the launch of an environmental education program called Spreading The Science, through which employees volunteer teaching environmental sciences and STEM in local communities and schools. STS adds to SWCA’s longstanding charitable giving program, SWCA Gives Back, more than doubling our volunteer hours in 2018 without losing productivity.

 

SOCIAL CONTRIBUTION: TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER

AECOM for its new focus on technology transfer in Harmful Algal Blooms (HABs), applying research and practical solutions to address this unprecedented ecological and health crisis on both coasts and around the world. In July 2018, Florida’s governor declared a state of emergency due to HABs, and AECOM served as lead consultant to implement an emergency $2.5-million algae cleanup pilot program demonstrating an innovative algae harvesting technology. The technology was proven effective in providing immediate relief to the impacted communities and is scalable for any algae-affected area worldwide. The recovered algae has many uses to provide a sustainable solution to our world, including; fertilizers, energy production and commercial products.

 

SOCIAL CONTRIBUTION: MENTAL HEALTH

Jacobs for its Mental Health Matters program that continues to develop a more inclusive environment where people feel safe, healthy and supported. Jacobs introduced Positive Mental Health Champions as part of the program, where employees are trained in how to guide staff who have mental health concerns or crises, to the appropriate level of help; support fellow employees; and encourage positive mental health throughout the workplace using the Five Ways to Wellbeing: Take Notice: Be curious. Catch sight of the beautiful. Remark on the unusual; Give: Do something nice for a friend, or a stranger. Thank someone. Smile; Be Active: Go for a walk or run. Step outside. Cycle. Play a game. Dance; Connect: Learn more about the people around you. Spend time with family, get involved at work, school or in your local community; Keep Learning: Try something new. Rediscover an old interest. Sign up for that course. With this new initiative, Jacobs signed up 900 mental health champions in 2018, greatly expanding the geographic reach of the program. Jacobs now has 1,100+ champions across the company, spanning 28 countries and six continents around the world.

 

INDUSTRY LEADERSHIP: LEADERSHIP BY EXAMPLE

EA Engineering, Science, and Technology Inc. PBC for earning Gold status for its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Program by Ecovadis, placing it in the top 1% of the more than 30,000 CSR programs. Ecovadis cited active leadership and involvement of EA’s employees; its annual CSR Report, developed in accordance with Global Reporting Initiative Standards; and its Carbon Footprint Report. An Ecovadis member since 2014, this was EA’s third biennial assessment, and marked the company’s first Gold rating—an improvement from previous Silver ratings achieved through continuous improvement and implementation of program enhancements based on prior feedback. EA attributes its continuous improvement to its employee-ownership culture and public benefit structure, and dedication and commitment of leadership and employees.

 

INDUSTRY LEADERSHIP: FRAMEWORK FOR CCR RECYCLING

AECOM for pioneering using an RFP to address the coal ash recycling/beneficial-reuse market. AECOM, with Dominion Energy Virginia, developed an industry-changing, public RFP/solicitation process and resulting Business Plan, presenting a comprehensive market response to a Virginia Senate Bill regarding Dominion’s coal combustion residual (CCR) recycling. Wide adoption of the RFP process is now under consideration, because of its efficiency in addressing market responses for cost, percentage of ash suitable for recycling, and recycling duration. For the Dominion site, ten bids for closure were generated, bundling recycled products, modes of transportation and construction approaches. Respondents included contractors, coal ash marketers, and beneficiation firms, all providing unique perspectives; recycling challenges; and CCR-recycled product demand. The precedent-setting project’s impact is industry-wide in a market that foresees 500 closures within 20 years.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: BIG DEALS

WSP Global Inc. for acquiring Berger Group Holdings Inc. (Morristown, N.J.), the parent company of Louis Berger, for $400 million. Louis Berger is a diversified professional services firm in transportation, infrastructure, environment and water with $480 million in net revenues, 5,000 employees and $45 million in ebitda. U.S. operations represented around 70% of 2018 net revenues and the acquisition increases WSP’s presence in continental Europe and with the U.S. federal sector.

The Ramboll Group (Copenhagen, Denmark) for acquiring U.S. engineering and design consultancy OBG (formerly O’Brien & Gere), strengthening Ramboll’s U.S. portfolio in water, energy, and environmental services. With the acquisition, Ramboll is establishing a new business unit for the Americas—also including Canada, Mexico, and Brazil—to be led by Jim Fox, CEO of OBG. Founded in 1945, OBG adds 900 experts to Ramboll’s team and brings its headcount in the United States to 2,000. The ambition for the Americas’ unit is to grow to 3-4,000 U.S. employees in four to five years. North America has been a strategic priority for Ramboll since it established its U.S. presence in 2014 by acquiring Environ. During 2018, Ramboll said it has grown organically by 9.5% in the United States.

Oaktree Capital Management LP in partnership with MWH’s management for the acquisition of MWH Constructors, a global construction firm focused on water and energy, spun out from Stantec (Edmonton, Canada) which had acquired all of MWH Global in 2016. MWH Constructors provides global engineering, procurement, construction operations, and construction management services in water and energy with over 2,200 employees. Current large-scale projects in the United States include a $939 million wastewater project with the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, a $196 million contract with the Trinity River Authority of Texas, and a $135 million project for a new wastewater treatment facility with the City of Logan, Utah.

J.F. Lehman & Company and Hennessy Capital for engineering a deal to consolidate, sell and list NRC Group as a public company with an enterprise value of $750 million. National Response Corporation (NRC, Great River, N.Y.) as a portfolio company of JFLCO acquired at least 10 companies in the past five years, including 250-person SWS Environmental Services (Fort Worth, Texas) in 2018 and prior to that ENPRO Services, Op-Tech Environmental Services, Sureclean Limited, Emerald Alaska, Specialized Response Solutions, Boom Technology, Water Truck Services, and CleanLine WWS. JFLCO merged portfolio companies NRC and Sprint Energy Services prior to selling control to Hennessy Capital, but investment affiliates of JFLCO will continue to own a significant equity position in the public company as part of the transaction. NRC is a diversified industrial services and waste management company serving marine, rail, general industrial and energy markets.

Eurofins Scientific (Luxembourg) and TestAmerica (North Canton, Ohio) for the deal to acquire TestAmerica from JSTI Group of China for $175 million. JSTI, an environmental consulting and engineering firm, acquired TestAmerica in September 2016 for an undisclosed amount from an ownership group led by HGI Capital and its bank, but presumed to be not too dissimilar from the 2018 sale price. JSTI said the divestment was made “due to changes in the global trading environment,” and Chinese news service, Caixin Global, reported TestAmerica had fallen into the red during its period of Chinese ownership. Industry sources said that the TestAmerica business remained stable during the Chinese ownership in spite of some backlash that the patrioticallly named TeestAmerica was owned by a Chinese company. In addition to some inevitable cultural and business communication mismatches, Jiangsu Transportation Institute (JSTI) also was developing a larger global engineering footprint with the acquisition of 1,700-person Spanish firm Eptisa Servicios de Ingeniería, possibly conflicting with competitive interests of many of TestAmerica’s largest engineering firm clients. TestAmerica ranks 1st on EBJ list of top environmental testing firms, operates 24 full-service testing laboratories with revenues of over $230 million in 2018, and has retained the same senior management through the process. Eurofins Scientific (Luxembourg), a publicly traded global testing and laboratory services firm with 35,000 employees and $3.5 billion in revenues.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: STRATEGIC GROWTH

Tetra Tech (Pasadena, CA) advanced its strategy of Leading with Science in 2018 by adding five companies that provide innovative solutions to address sustainability and resiliency. Two of these companies, Glumac and Norman Disney & Young (NDY) added more than 1,000 design engineers to Tetra Tech’s high-performance buildings design practice. U.S.-based Glumac brings the design and engineering of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard and Net-Zero infrastructure, and NDY, with offices throughout Australia, the Asia-Pacific region, the United Kingdom, and Canada, . integrates innovative technologies to create environments that use less energy, recycle water, and provide safe and sustainable infrastructure. BridgeNet, Fort Point Associates, and Canadian Projects Limited (CPL) expanded Tetra Tech’s capability to provide technically differentiated solutions in environmental and renewable energy markets: BridgeNet in aviation technology solutions; Fort Point Associates in coastal resiliency and waterfront planning; and CPL in hydro, wind, and solar energy in Canada.

NV5 for four strategic acquisitions in 2018 that added 400 employees, enhanced service offerings in the environmental, MEP, infrastructure and energy markets, and broadened its geographic coverage: Butsko Utility Design in utility planning and design; CSA Building Services Consulting Engineers in mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) and sustainability consulting in Asia and the Middle East, serving retail, education, healthcare, industrial, hospitality and infrastructure markets; CALYX Engineers and Consultants, engineering and environmental services in infrastructure and transportation in the Southeast; and CHI Engineering Service, a full-service Engineering, Procurement and Construction Management (EPCM) firm liquefied natural gas, petroleum gas and natural gas industries, adding to NV5’s power group.

Willdan Group Inc. (Anaheim, Calif.) for the acquisitions of $145-million Lime Energy (Newark, N.J.) and $7-million Newcomb Anderson McCormick (NAM, San Francisco). NAM develops energy efficiency projects, distributed resources, and strategic energy plans and programs for municipal and higher education customers, including Pacific Gas & Electric Company, Southern California Edison, and the City of San Francisco. NAM has also managed energy efficiency partnership programs for 33 university campuses, 72 community college districts, and 34 state correctional facilities. Lime Energy, acquired for $120 million or 10 times Willdan’s estimate of Lime Energy’s anticipated adjusted EBITDA for 2018, designs and implements direct install energy efficiency programs for utilities that target energy savings for commercial customers, allowing utilities to delay investments in transmission and distribution upgrades and new power plants.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: BACK IN THE GAME

TRC (Lowell, Mass.) for acquiring Vali Cooper & Associates Inc. (Concord, Calif.), an infrastructure firm that manages transportation, water and wastewater, utility, and facilities projects. Vali Cooper is the first major acquisition for TRC since it went private in June 2017 following its sale to New Mountain Capital. Vali Cooper has 200 employees and with the deal, TRC has nearly 600 employees in California providing engineering and management services in the infrastructure, oil & gas, environmental, and power markets.

Golder (Palm Beach FL), a global engineering and consulting company, for acquiring Pastor, Behling & Wheeler, a Texas-based environmental firm with five offices in the state and core services in site investigation, remediation, and closure; compliance and permitting support; and environmental engineering design. Golder, which suffered the impacts of global commodity market cycles perhaps more than any other top 10 environmental firm and restructured its management and ownership approach under CEO Hisham Mahmoud, said the deal fits Golder’s strategy to expand geographic footprint and resources in key markets in the U.S. Employee-owned Golder has 165 offices in 40 countries.

Cardno Limited (Brisbane, Australia) a publicly traded serial acquiror of U.S. environmental firms in the 2000s that suffered during the Great Recession, for returning to the acquisition market in late 2018 with two deals: Raba Kistner (San Antonio TX) for $55 million and TGM (Melbourne, Australia) for AUD $21.6 million. Raba Kistner is a 470-person engineering services firm in construction materials testing, geotechnical engineering consulting, project management, and quality assurance and inspection primarily for transport infrastructure projects, government and commercial clients with $58.5 million of net revenue in the 12 months to September 2018. TGM is a 130-person firm in urban development, building and infrastructure with AUD $23 million in revenue over the next 12 months, mostly in the state of Victoria.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: PRIVATE EQUITY

TPG Growth and TPG’s The Rise Fund for acquiring CLEAResult (Austin, Texas) from General Atlantic. CLEAResult is a provider of energy efficiency solutions for utility companies and local governments, partnering with clients on services and programs that provide energy optimization and efficiency to residential, institutional, commercial, and industrial organizations. CLEAResult has 2,500 employees in more than 70 cities, experienced tremendous growth over the past few years, and delivering over 4,500 GWh and 54 million therms of energy savings in 2017.

One Equity Partners for the acquisition of Gibson U.S. Environmental Services, a division of Gibson Energy Inc. (Houston.). The company has been renamed OMNI Environmental Solutions (Carencro LA) and provides oilfield waste management and environmental services to exploration and production operators and oilfield services companies, focusing on waste- and water-related environmental, logistics and rental services. OMNI operates across multiple U.S. energy basins, including in the Anadarko, Bakken, Eagle Ford, Gulf Coast, Haynesville and Rockies regions.

Cotton Creek Capital for the acquisition of Vecta Environmental Services (Gonzales, La.), a provider of industrial and environmental services to chemical, industrial, utilities, and oil and gas midstream customers along the U.S. Gulf Coast. Operating from three facilities in Louisiana and Texas, Vecta specializes in hydro-blasting, vacuum truck, tank cleaning, hydro-excavation and insulation and scaffolding services for routine maintenance, planned outages/shutdowns, regulatory compliance and emergency call outs.

Oaktree Capital Management LP for its investment in Montrose Environmental Group (Irvine, Calif.) to provide capital and strategic support to accelerate growth. Montrose Environmental offers measurement and analytical services, as well as environmental resiliency and sustainability solutions to clients across a wide array of sectors, growing by acquisition to more than 50 offices and over 1,100 employees. Oaktree observes that the environmental testing and services industry is highly fragmented with and Montrose in an ideal position to consolidate the industry through a combination of organic growth and its acquisition strategy.

Wind Point Partners for its acquisition of The Kleinfelder Group Inc. (San Diego, Calif.), an engineering, construction management, and environmental professional services firm, in conjunction with management. Founded in 1961, Kleinfelder operates more than 60 office locations in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Kleinfelder CEO George Pierson lauded the partnership with Wind Point for help to “remove the final obstacle of an unsustainable capital structure.” Between 2010 and 2014 Kleinfelder made several acquisitions, including Buys & Associates, LPG Environmental, InSite Environmental, Corrigan Consulting, Ecobiological Group and Alliance Environmental in Australia, Omni Environmental, Simon Wong Engineering, and Hood Group in Canada.

Ares Capital Europe for its investment in engineering and environmental services company the RSK Group Ltd (Helsby, UK) has raised funds from Ares Capital Europe with plans to double in size over the next few years through development of new businesses and bolt-on acquisitions. In December 2018, RSK announced the acquisition of TBF Contracting and tree surgeons the BTS Group, the seventh and eighth acquisitions that RSK, a privately-owned company with 36 international offices and annual revenues of £200 million, has made in its financial year 2018-19.

Macquarie Infrastructure Partners (MIP, New York) for its deal with Lagoon Water Solutions Holdings (Oklahoma City) to fund growth. Founded in 2017, Lagoon Water Solutions works with oilfield producers to reduce their operating costs by providing reliable and efficient water midstream infrastructure. MIP has committed up to $500 million to support growth in the STACK, SCOOP, and other basins. Initial investment capital will focus on the expansion of Lagoon’s assets serving Anadarko Basin producers. Lagoon has more than 350,000 barrels of water per day of disposal capacity across 17 facilities and over 150 miles of water gathering pipelines.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: MID-SIZED FIRMS

Englobe Corp. (Laval, Quebec) for the acquisition of Crandall Engineering Ltd. (Moncton, New Brunswick). Englobe provides soils, materials and environmental engineering and Crandall will become a division of Englobe but operate under its own name. The strategic merger will allow Crandall and Englobe to become a major service provider in Atlantic Canada, with five offices and nearly 200 staff in the region. Englobe was founded over 50 years ago and has 1,800 employees in more than 65 locations across Canada and in France and the United-Kingdom. Crandall is an employee-owned company founded in 1952 with a team of 115.

Engineering Consulting Services (ECS) for the acquisition of GEM Engineering Inc. (GEM), whose office will become the Louisville, Ky. location of ECS Southeast and a member of the ECS Group of Companies. GEM specializes in geotechnical engineering, construction materials testing and environmental engineering. Founded in 1988, ECS offers geotechnical, environmental, construction materials and facilities engineering and has over 1,600 employees and more than 60 offices and testing facilities across the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Southeast and Southwest.

Olgoonik Development LLC (Anchorage, Alaska), an Alaska Native Corporation, for the acquisition of FPM Group Ltd. (Ronkonkoma, N.Y.) and FPM Remediations Inc. FPM provide environmental remediation, science, hydrology, and compliance services; geophysics; military munitions response; facilities engineering; and construction management services to government and commercial customers. Olgoonik provides environmental services for government and commercial clients, and FPM will expand Olgoonik’s services across the United States but also into the new areas of geophysics and military munitions response. The FPM companies are operating as separate subsidiaries under Olgoonik Development.

Braun Intertec (Minneapolis, Minn.), a geotechnical-engineering and environmental consulting and testing firm, for the acquisition of W&M Environmental Group (Plano, Texas). The addition of W&M enhanced Braun Intertec’s environmental management and remediation services for energy, industrial, and development clients, bringing environmental management, compliance, and permitting capabilities with more than 50 environmental consulting professionals. Founded in 1995, W&M had seven offices throughout Texas. Braun Intertec became 100% employee-owned in 2007 and has nearly 1,000 employees.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: INDUSTRIAL SERVICES

Clean Harbors Inc. (Norwell, Mass.) for the acquisition of Veolia North America’s U.S. Industrial Cleaning Services Division for $120 million. The $210 million division will enable Clean Harbors to add scale and capabilities to its existing U.S. Industrial Services business, expand its geographic reach, particularly in the Midwest, and add scale in key regions like the Gulf Coast, driving more waste volumes into its disposal network of incinerators, landfills and other waste treatment facilities.

TETRA Technologies Inc. (The Woodlands, Texas) for acquiring SwiftWater Energy Services (Midland, Texas) that provides water management and solutions to oil and gas operators in the Permian Basin. SwiftWater’s adjusted EBITDA is expected to be $16-20 million for the 12 months following completion of the acquisition and the deal consists of $40 million in cash, shares and earnout payments up to $15 million. TETRA’s CEO Stuart Brightman has no qualms about doubling down on the Permian with “excellent synergies with nominal customer overlap… as both companies continue to see strong demand for water management solutions, creating excellent opportunities for cross-selling.”

TAS Environmental Services (Fort Worth, Texas), an environmental services provider and portfolio company of TEAM Partners, for the acquisition of two environmental services companies, Donovan Industrial Service and ROTAP, both of Orange, Texas. TAS has now completed four add-ons in the past 16 months. Donovan provides environmental services for hazardous and non-hazardous materials including industrial cleaning, spill response, transportation, remediation, and related services. ROTAP provides transportation and rentals of roll-off boxes, tanks, pumps and related items. TAS provides a comprehensive suite of environmental services including industrial services, emergency and spill response, and wastewater disposal and operates 13 locations in Texas, Louisiana, and Arkansas.

PRISM Spectrum Holdings (Pittsburgh, Pa.), an environmental remediation and demolition contractor, for the acquisition of Copper Environmental Consulting based in Montana, and Environmental Holdings Group (EHG, Raleigh, NC.). The acquisitions 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 abatement and demolition firm ranked among the top five largest abatement firms in the nation with seven offices throughout the South.

Clean Earth Inc. (Hatboro PA) for the acquisition of Disposal and Recycling Technologies Inc. (DART, Charlotte, NC) including a RCRA Part B Hazardous Waste TSDF in Charlotte, N.C. and wastewater treatment facility in Detroit. DART also performs on-site wastewater treatment and remediation services. The acquisition expands Clean Earth’s geographical reach in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic hazardous and non-hazardous waste market and gives Clean Earth its first wastewater treatment facility. Also in 2018, Clean Earth has acquired ESMI Companies, (thermal desorption technology for remediation, recycling, and beneficial reuse) and MKC Enterprises Inc. (hazardous waste RCRA Part B facility).

HEPACO LLC (Charlotte NC) for the acquisition of Trans Environmental (Loves Park IL), an environmental remediation, industrial cleaning, and emergency response services company. Trans founders Matt Warneke and Jeff Lonas will continue to lead the company. HEPACO is majority-owned by Gryphon Investors, which purchased it in August 2016. HEPACO has 31 locations in more than 20 states in the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast United States.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: TECHNOLOGY

Hubbell Inc. (Shelton, Conn.) for the acquisition of Aclara Technologies (St. Louis, Mo.), an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, for $1.1 billion in an all-cash transaction. Aclara offers smart infrastructure solutions, advanced metering infrastructure, meters, software, and installation services to gas and electric utilities and will strengthen Hubbell Power Systems’ competitive position in utility markets. Aclara reported revenues of $500 million for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2017. Hubbell is a manufacturer of electrical and electronic products with revenues of $3.5 billion.

Kuraray Co. Ltd. (Tokyo, Japan) for the acquisition of Calgon Carbon Corp. (Pittsburgh PA). A global leader in the manufacture and distribution of coal-, wood- and coconut-based activated carbon products, Calgon Carbon provides purification solutions for drinking water, wastewater, pollution abatement, and industrial and commercial manufacturing processes. Calgon Carbon’s net sales for 2017 were $620 million compared to $514 million in 2016.

 

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS: INTERNATIONAL

KKR for the acquisition of a 60% stake in Ramky Enviro Engineers Limited (REEL, Hyderabad, India) for $530 million, valuing the company at $925 million. Ramky offers solid and hazardous waste management services, as well as paper, plastic and chemicals recycling and waste-to-energy. REEL has a presence in 20 Indian states, as well as in Southeast Asian, Middle Eastern and African markets. KKR says its investment marks the first private equity buyout in the country’s environmental services sector. The deal came as Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration enhanced 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.

Stantec (Edmonton, Canada) for the acquisitions of Wood & Grieve Engineers (WGE, Perth, Australia) and Peter Brett Associates (PBA, Reading, England). WGE is a 600-person consulting services company focused on buildings engineering. With nearly six decades operating in key regional markets, WGE’s projects have included engineering services for the $700 million Optus Stadium, which opened in Perth earlier in 2018. PBA has 700 engineers, planners, scientists and economists delivering projects in a variety of sectors from 14 offices across the UK and three in Central Europe, aiming at UK initiatives for refurbished schools, university upgrading, and a major national investment program in infrastructure. More than 2,400 of Stantec’s 22,000 team members are based in the United Kingdom.