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EBI News for January 6, 2021- Environmental Services Industry Grows

EBI News for January 6, 2021- The following section highlights the latest news in the environmental industry. Including growth in the environmental services industry, acquisitions, new projects and more!

RSK to acquire UK and Asia water businesses from B&V

The RSK Group Limited (Helsby, UK) is acquiring Black & Veatch’s Water Europe and Water Asia businesses, adding an expected £160 million to RSK’s annual revenues. The deal will include UK-based Black & Veatch Limited, Black & Veatch Hong Kong and Black & Veatch (SEA) Pte in Singapore. The businesses, which will be rebranded as RSK’s Binnies division, specialize in water utility, infrastructure, engineering and environmental projects, and flood and coastal defense planning and design. The deal will increase RSK’s headcount from 4,300 to 5,500 employees worldwide. RSK grew annual revenues from £147 million in 2018 to £287 million in 2020 and is aiming to become the largest privately owned environmental and engineering business in Europe by 2025 with revenues of £1 billion annually. The transaction does not impact B&V’s management consulting or oil and gas and power businesses. Since founding in 2016, RSK has made 39 acquisitions; CEO Alan Ryder said the B&V deal “marks the most significant growth in our 31-year history.”

Spending on digital EHS services forecast at $3.2 billion in 2025

The digital EHS services market will reach $3.2 billion in 2025, according to a study by Verdantix (London, UK). A forecast compound annual growth rate of 6% will be driven by consistent enhancement of EHS software, as well as the “accelerated adoption of new EHS technologies as the EHS function continues to digitize in response to COVID-19 challenges.” Vendors positioned to benefit include EHS service firms such as AECOM, Arcadis, DuPont Sustainable Solutions, Jacobs, and WSP, in addition to EHS consulting and specialist firms like Accenture, Capgemini, Deloitte, ERM, GHD Group, and Tetra Tech, Verdantix reported. 

JFLCO adds Entact to environmental portfolio

J.F. Lehman & Company (JFLCO) announced the acquisition of Entact LLC (Westmont, Ill.), a national provider of environmental remediation and geotechnical services with approximately 600 employees. Entact’s management team “will remain meaningful shareholders of the business and continue to lead the company.” Will Hanenberg, a principal with JFLCO, said: “We believe Entact has significant opportunities for growth as its service offerings should be well-suited to address the increasing need for both environmental stewardship and infrastructure investment.”

AECOM to upgrade one of largest U.S. wastewater treatment plants

AECOM (Los Angeles, Calif.) has been selected for an Energy Savings Performance Contract for the Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts’ Joint Water Pollution Control Plant (JWPCP) in Carson, Calif. The JWPCP is a 400-million-gallons-per-day activated sludge treatment plant. The contract includes upgrades to the pure oxygen production process, which could result in more than $1.3 million in energy, water, and maintenance cost savings annually and more than $8 million in avoided capital expenditure. AECOM will replace two 150 tons-per-day backup cryogenic oxygen generation plants with two vacuum pressure swing adsorption (VPSA) units. The current cryogenic systems require multiple days to start up and achieve required oxygen purity and production levels, making it imperative that the two backup units operate continuously. The new VPSA units use adsorption media to separate oxygen from ambient air, achieving oxygen purity and production levels within a few hours, meaning the new units will not need to operate continuously. 

EA awarded USACE contract for remediation services

EA Engineering, Science, and Technology Inc. PBC (Hunt Valley, Md.) has been awarded a prime contract by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Tulsa District, for environmental remediation services in the Southwest Division. The Multiple Award Task Order Contract has a base period of three years with one two-year option for a total period of five years and a total value of $45 million to be competed among four selected contractors. Under this Indefinite Delivery Contract, EA will compete for a full range of environmental remediation services, including services under the Military Munitions Response Program. Task orders will focus on control and remediation of environmental contamination from pollutants, toxic substances, radioactive and hazardous materials, munitions and explosives. 

SCS Engineers launches two apps in December

SCS Engineers (Long Beach, Calif.) has launched a mobile app for landfills and solid waste facilities. The app supports monitoring and analyses of groundwater and liquids, landfill gas, and surface emissions critical to facility infrastructure and the environment in real time on a mobile phone or device. The company also launched SCS Groundwater Environmental Compliance, an app to monitor and manage data for sites like active or closed landfills, plants, and impact sites such as former dry cleaners or industrial facilities.

U.S. renewable energy consumption surpasses coal 

In 2019, U.S. annual energy consumption from renewable sources exceeded coal consumption for the first time since before 1885, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) Monthly Energy Review. Compared with 2018, coal consumption in the United States decreased nearly 15%, and total renewable energy consumption grew by 1%. In 2019, electricity generation from wind surpassed hydro for the first time and is now the most-used source of renewable energy for electricity generation in the United States on an annual basis. Total renewable energy consumption in the United States grew for the fourth year in a row to a record-high 11.5 quadrillion Btu in 2019. Since 2015, growth in U.S. renewable energy has been almost entirely attributable to wind and solar in the electric power sector.

Hannon Armstrong invests in 1.6 GW renewable energy portfolio 

Hannon Armstrong Sustainable Infrastructure Capital Inc. (Annapolis, Md.) announced a preferred equity investment in a 1.6 gigawatt (GW) onshore wind and utility-scale solar portfolio developed and managed by Clearway Energy Group (San Francisco, Calif.). The “highly contracted” renewables portfolio includes 874 MW of onshore wind, 192 MW of utility-scale solar, and 557 MW of utility-scale solar with 395 MW of co-located storage in four states: California, Hawaii, Texas, and West Virginia. Hannon Armstrong has funded approximately $200 million of its investment and expects to invest approximately $663 million in total.

CenterOak expands environmental services platform with wastewater services

Shamrock Environmental (Browns Summit, N.C.), a portfolio company of CenterOak Partners, has acquired Virginia American Industries (VAI, Richmond, Va.), a regional provider of non-hazardous wastewater treatment services operating through centralized wastewater treatment facilities in Florida and Virginia under the Aqua Clean and Reco names. Shamrock was formed in 1994 and provides non-hazardous wastewater treatment and industrial services across the Southeast. This is Shamrock’s first acquisition since CenterOak completed a majority investment in January 2020 and approximately doubles the company’s regional presence.

Parsons awarded $21 million contract to safeguard Southern Nevada’s water supply

Parsons Corporation (Centreville, Va.) has been selected by the Southern Nevada Water Authority for program and construction management services to improve and increase water supply to Las Vegas. Continuing a partnership that began in 1993, the three-year, $21-million contract will focus on water distribution and watershed sustainability. The new contract also includes the option for three extensions totaling 12 years.

Arcadis to help Southern California recover from catastrophic wildfires

Arcadis (Amsterdam, The Netherlands) has been awarded a contract by California’s Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) to be the primary consultant for wildfire debris and hazard tree removal in Southern California, following the state’s devastating wildfire season. The total project is valued at $52.4 million and encompasses an estimated 823 properties and 120,000 hazard trees. A team of approximately 200 biologists, archaeologists, geologists, industrial hygienists, arborists and foresters will manage the region’s restoration and improve wildfire resilience. Approximately 4.2 million acres burned in California in 2020, displacing more than 53,000 people.

LaBella acquires The Chazen Companies

LaBella Associates (Rochester, N.Y.) has acquired The Chazen Companies (Poughkeepsie, N.Y.), a multidisciplinary consulting firm. All of Chazen’s current employees—across offices in Poughkeepsie, Glens Falls, Troy, New York City, White Plains, Nashville, Chattanooga and Portland—are expected to remain with the company, which will operate as Chazen, a LaBella company, through 2021. The Environmental Financial Consulting Group initiated the transaction and served as Chazen’s financial advisor. “Like LaBella, Chazen has been successful because of long-term client partnerships, fostered by employee-owners,” said Jeff Roloson, president of LaBella.

Central Earth Engineering Joins GEI Consultants

Employee-owned GEI Consultants Inc. (Toronto, Ont.) announced that Central Earth Engineering (CEE, Barrie, Ont.) has joined the firm. The addition of CEE’s geotechnical and hydrogeological engineers, construction materials testing and inspection technicians, and laboratory testing specialists will expand GEI’s geotechnical and earth sciences practice in Ontario. 

LBYD joins forces with North Wind Group

LBYD Engineers (Birmingham, Ala.) has merged into North Wind Group (Idaho Falls, Idaho) as a subsidiary company. LBYD Engineers’ management and brand will remain in place. Founded in 1973, LBYD’s services include civil engineering, structural engineering, protective design, hydrology design, forensic engineering, and construction engineering services. North Wind provides engineering, construction, environmental, and technical services. Founded in 1997, North Wind has grown to a group of companies employing more than 1,750 professionals. Since 2010, North Wind has been a wholly owned subsidiary of Cook Inlet Region Inc. (CIRI), an Alaska Native corporation.

Researchers discover tire wear particles are killing coho salmon

A U.S. National Science Foundation-funded research team at the University of Washington Tacoma and Washington State University Puyallup has discovered why more than half of coho salmon that return to Puget Sound’s urban streams die before they can spawn. The culprit is chemical leachate from tire-wear particles, specifically a molecule related to a preservative that keeps tires from breaking down. “This research shows that we not only need to worry about the environmental effects of products like rubber and plastic, but also the many other chemicals that are part of the original mix,” said Anne-Marie Schmoltner, a program director in NSF’s Division of Chemistry. “They can be very dangerous even in small quantities.”


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