EBJ News for January 20, 2020

EBJ News for January 20, 2020 – The following section highlights the latest stories in the Environmental Industry.

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California budget proposes comprehensive approach to climate change

The 2020-21 California State Budget proposal submitted by Governor Gavin Newsom on January 10 includes a climate budget of $12 billion over the next five years. Three key areas are a proposed climate resilience bond; cap-and-trade expenditures to continue the transition to a carbon-neutral economy; and a new Climate Catalyst Fund to promote the deployment of new technologies, especially by small businesses and emerging industries. The fund will be administered by the Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank to finance investments in low-carbon transportation, sustainable agriculture, and waste diversion through low-interest loans. The Budget proposes to capitalize the fund with $1 billion general fund over the next four years.

Great Lakes wins coastal protection work

Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation (Oak Brook, Ill.), the largest provider of dredging services in the United States, has announced several major awards totaling $83 million. Awards include coastal protection work worth $30.5 million in Florida, $11.4 million in South Carolina, and $13.8 million in Georgia. The Hunting Island State Park Project in South Carolina will place additional sand onto two miles of the barrier island’s beach that were eroded after major storms. The Tybee Island Shore Protection Project in Georgia involves the replenishment of sand lost due to the Irma and Maria storms.

TRC closes acquisition of Environmental Partners

TRC (Lowell, Mass.) has closed its acquisition of Environmental Partners Inc. (EPI), part of TRC’s strategy to bolster its capabilities in geo-environmental services and expand in the Pacific Northwest. With roughly 30 geologists, engineers and scientists joining from EPI, the transaction positions TRC as the top player in environmental engineering and consulting in the Greater Seattle market, according to TRC. “EPI is an ideal cultural and technical fit for TRC and the strategic growth of our EV Sector,” said Mark Robbins, TRC’s Environmental Sector President. “The Pacific NW region is a vibrant and growing market and EPI brings a platform for our continued development.”

Market for EC services rises 5% globally, EA reports

The global market for environmental consulting (EC) services increased 5.2% during 2018 to reach $35.8 billion, according to research by Environment Analyst. Expectations are that 2019 and 2020 will be slightly more restrained with increases of 4-4.5% given the slowing global economy and increasing risk of recession in mature markets such as the U.S. and U.K. Geographically growth was driven by strong demand in North America, where EC revenues grew by 7.5% in 2018, while Western Europe saw a marked slowdown with growth all but halving to 3.1% compared to the previous year; the Asia Pacific EC market also decelerated with 4.1% growth.

Miller Environmental buys emergency response and environmental firm

Miller Environmental Group Inc. (Calverton, N.Y.), a portfolio company of GenNx360 Capital Partners offering environmental and emergency response services in the Eastern United States, has acquired Environmental Products & Services of Vermont Inc. (Syracuse, N.Y.). EP&S provides emergency response, remediation, and environmental services and operates across 17 service locations along the eastern seaboard. The combined company will have more than 350 employees in 25 locations across the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Southeast, and the ability to respond to emergencies nationally through its emergency response network. GenNx360 invested in MEG in March 2019.

ECS acquires Atlanta Environmental

Engineering Consulting Services (ECS, Chantilly, Va.) has acquired Atlanta Environmental Management Inc. (AEM, Atlanta, Ga.), bringing to ECS new specialty environmental capabilities in the Southeast and offices in four locations serving the Atlanta market. Founded in 1988, ECS offers geotechnical, construction materials, environmental, and facilities engineering. It has over 1,700 employees in more than 65 offices and testing facilities across the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, Southeast and Southwest. AEM will become a part of ECS Southeast, LLP and a member of the ECS Group of Companies.

BLM to embark on environmental assessment of geothermal plan

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is initiating an Environmental Assessment to analyze a proposed plan by Ormat Technologies Inc. (Reno, Nev.) to develop a geothermal plant in the San Emidio Desert. The area has a long history of geothermal exploration and production that began in the late-1980s with the 3.6-megawatt Empire Geothermal Plant. The BLM is analyzing the environmental effects of upgrading and potentially building a new power plant to produce 40 megawatts of electricity, a substation, up to 25 total geothermal production and injection wells, approximately 7.5 miles of above ground pipelines, and a 58-mile overhead power line. Public comment and review is slated for April 2020, with a decision expected in June 2020. The 24,000-acre San Emidio Geothermal Unit includes nine federal geothermal leases.

WSP acquires LT Environmental

WSP (Montreal, Canada) has acquired LT Environmental (Arvada, Colo.), strengthening its expertise in the environmental sector and expanding WSP’s geographic presence in the United States, particularly the Rocky Mountain West. Headquartered in Colorado, LT Environmental has approximately 140 employees and regional offices in Texas, New Mexico, North Dakota, Utah and Wyoming. The company is mostly active in site investigation, remediation, water resources, air-quality, and chemical and materials management.

TBS acquires sea floor surveying and environmental firm 

T. Baker Smith (TBS, Houston) has acquired Naismith Marine Services Inc. (Rockport, Texas), a hydrographic, geophysical surveying, and environmental firm. Naismith specializes in bathymetry, underwater inspection and imaging, oyster and sea grass surveys, and wetland delineations. TBS is a multi-disciplinary firm serving the public works, land development, industrial, pipeline and exploration, and production market sectors primarily in Texas and Louisiana. TBS has operated in the Gulf Coast region since 1913, and this is its first acquisition.

Atkins announces publication of FEMA report

Atkins, a member of the SNC-Lavalin Group (Montreal, Canada), announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has published its Compendium Report on the performance of residential, commercial and governmental buildings in areas affected by the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season. “The 2017 Atlantic hurricane season was extremely active, producing 17 named storms, including six major hurricanes,” said Diana Castro, senior engineer at Atkins. “We believe the contents of this report will improve building safety and resiliency through informed design and construction guidance and best practices.”

Enel starts operations at two U.S. renewable energy plants

Enel (Boston, Mass.), through its U.S. renewable energy company Enel Green Power North America, has started operations at two renewable energy plants totaling around 318 MW of capacity. The projects include the first 25-MW phase of the Roadrunner solar project in Texas, and the 66-MW Whitney Hill wind project in Illinois. The announcement follows the recent start of operations of 450 MW of the High Lonesome wind farm in Texas, bringing Enel’s total new renewable capacity added in the United States in 2019 to nearly 800 MW with another 1 GW currently under construction across six renewable energy projects.

Canada extends Parsons’ Giant Mine remediation contract

Parsons Corporation (Centreville, Va.) has been awarded a contract extension for remediation at the Giant Mine in the Northwest Territories, one of the largest clean up projects in Canada. Parsons is the sole prime contractor for the mine’s final remediation program. The two-year, cost plus fixed fee amendment from the Canadian government continues efforts at the former gold mine to contain and manage arsenic trioxide. Parsons’ initial contract began in 2013.

ACON Investments buys Pine Environmental

Saw Mill Capital has sold Pine Environmental Services LLC (Windsor, N.J.) to ACON Investments LLC. Pine Environmental is one of the largest independent providers of rental equipment for environmental testing and measurement and continuous emission stack testing in North America. During Saw Mill Capital’s investment period, Pine increased from 18 to 38 locations throughout the United States and Canada.

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