, ,

EBI News for May 18, 2022 – Steel industry emissions to decline 30% by 2050 

EBI News for May 18, 2022 – The following news section contains the latest stories for the environmental industry. Including, steel industry emissions to decline 30% by 2050, acquisitions, and more!

Geosyntec gets major investment from Blackstone 

Environmental engineering and design consulting firm Geosyntec (Boca Raton, Fla.) announced a majority investment by Blackstone Energy Partners. The partnership is expected to strengthen Geosyntec’s growth through strategic acquisitions, recruitment of top talent, and expansion into new markets and geographies. “Countries around the world face enormous technical challenges in the energy transition, infrastructure renewal and development, climate change mitigation and adaptation, disaster response, and water supply. The scale and complexity of these challenges require transformational change, technical innovation, and creative partnerships. With Blackstone Energy Partners, we are ideally positioned to help our clients respond to these urgent and complex challenges,” said Rudolph Bonaparte, chairman of Geosyntec. Terms were not disclosed, but Andrej Avelini, president of AEC Advisors LLC, advisor to Geosyntec, said he believes this to be “the largest investment into a previously employee-owned engineering/consulting firm to date, and top five overall.” 


Novelis?to?build $2.5B low-carbon aluminum recycling plant

Novelis Inc. (Atlanta, Ga.) will invest $2.5 billion in a new low-carbon recycling and rolling plant in Alabama. The facility will have an initial 600 kilotonnes of finished aluminum goods capacity per year; more than half will serve growing demand for aluminum beverage can sheet in North America, which is being driven by consumer preference for more sustainable packaging. According to Novelis, it will be the first fully integrated aluminum mill built in the United States in 40 years and will aim to be net carbon neutral for Scope 1 and 2, powered primarily by renewable energy and set up for railroad transportation. With the addition of a new recycling center for beverage cans, Novelis will be able to recycle 90 billion cans globally, up from 74 billion today. “Aluminum beverage cans… are the models of sustainable packaging and the circular economy. With an average ‘can-to-can’ lifecycle of just a couple of months, a can that is recycled today can be back on store shelves in as little as 60 days,” the company stated.


AECOM-led joint venture wins Navy CLEAN contract

AECOM (Dallas) announced that its Resolution Consultants joint venture with EnSafe (Memphis, Tenn.) has been awarded a contract by the Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic to deliver architecture and engineering services for the Comprehensive Long-Term Environmental Action Navy (CLEAN) program. Under the single-award, indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract with a $400 million ceiling, the joint venture will perform environmental studies, investigations, and designs that address pressing environmental challenges. The joint venture will provide program management and technical environmental services that address issues such as per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and other emerging contaminants, vapor intrusion, sediments, munitions and radiological assessment, and hazardous substances. The work will support compliance with environmental restoration programs such as CERCLA and RCRA.


Steel industry emissions to decline 30% by 2050 

Steel industry carbon emissions are expected to fall 30% by 2050 compared to 2021, according to a new report by Wood Mackenzie (Singapore), with steelmakers under pressure to reduce reliance on highly polluting conventional blast furnaces and adopt low-emission alternatives. The global share of electric arc furnace (EAF) in steelmaking is rising, reflecting policy shifts and increasing focus on scrap use. By 2050, EAF will account for 48% technology share used in steelmaking, up from 30% last year, almost on par with the traditional basic oxygen furnace (BOF) method. The steel industry is expected to commence hydrogen use as early as 2027, with hydrogen-based steel production accounting for 10% of total steel output by 2050. “Together with green hydrogen-based direct reduced iron (DRI), scrap use, and adoption of carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS), steel industry’s carbon emissions can decline 30% from current levels by mid-century,” Wood Mackenzie research director Malan Wu said. 


Clean Harbors reports robust demand in Q1

Clean Harbors Inc. (Norwell, Mass.), a provider of environmental and industrial services, reported revenues increased 45% to $1.17 billion for the first quarter ended March 31, 2022 from $808.1 million in the same period of 2021. Record quarterly revenue reflected demand for hazardous waste disposal, industrial services and re-refined products, in addition to the firm’s October 2021 acquisition of HydroChemPSC (HPC). The firm’s Environmental Services revenues increased 45% year-over-year, “reflecting the contribution of HPC, higher volumes in our disposal and recycling facilities, pricing initiatives and steady demand across our service businesses,” Alan S. McKim, chairman, president and CEO, reported. Clean Harbors’ Safety-Kleen Sustainability Solutions revenues grew 44%. The firm’s disposal network reported a healthy backlog of volume, while “underlying trends such as U.S. regulations, infrastructure spending, chemical manufacturing and reshoring of multiple industries also provide a promising backdrop for our entire Environmental Services segment. As a result, we are continuing to invest in our plants to increase throughput across our network, including constructing a new incinerator in Nebraska,” McKim said. 


Republic Services announces first quarter total revenue growth of 14%

Republic Services Inc. (Phoenix, Ariz.) reported net income of $352 million for the three months ended March 31, 2022, versus $295.9 million for the comparable 2021 period. “Our strong start to the year was made possible through the execution of our strategy that is designed to generate profitable growth,” said Jon Vander Ark, president and CEO. “We delivered double-digit growth in revenue, EBITDA and free cash flow while making investments to expand our environmental solutions business. Republic closed on the acquisition of hazardous waste disposal company US Ecology in May 2022.


DOE seeks feedback on bipartisan infrastructure law

The U.S. Department of Energy is seeking public input on the structure of the $2.5 billion Transmission Facilitation Program (TFP), which President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law created to help build out new transmission lines across the country. The innovative revolving fund program will provide Federal support to overcome financial hurdles to large-scale new transmission lines and upgrade existing transmission, as well as the connection of microgrids. According to DOE, the country needs to expand electricity transmission systems by 60% by 2030 and may need to triple it by 2050. More than 70% of the nation’s grid transmission lines and power transformers are over 25 years old; power outages from severe weather have doubled over the past two decades; and power failures reached their highest levels since reliability tracking began in 2013, with U.S. customers on average experiencing more than eight hours of outages in 2020. 


Tetra Tech reports strong second quarter results

Tetra Tech Inc. (Pasadena, Calif.) announced record revenue in the second quarter totaling $853 million and net revenue of $700 million, up 13% and 17% year-over-year, respectively. Backlog increased to $3.61 billion, up 15% year-over-year. Performance was driven by double-digit growth in U.S. State & Local, International and Commercial markets. During the second quarter Tetra Tech acquired two technical consulting and engineering firms: Piteau Associates and Axiom Data Science. 


Nature-based carbon credit platform secures $55M

Pachama (San Francisco, Calif.), a technology company focused on carbon credit verification in forestry, has raised $55 million in a Series B funding round led by Future Positive, with participation from existing and new investors, bringing total investment secured to $79 million. Pachama is building a technology-based approach to forest carbon credit verification with the goal of bringing accountability and scale to carbon markets. “The current afforestation market is fragmented and expensive,” said Carmichael Roberts of Breakthrough Energy Ventures. “Pachama’s technology—which uniquely combines AI and advanced remote sensing—is enabling afforestation at scale and making carbon removal accessible for companies of any size.” Pachama uses satellite imagery, remote sensing and machine learning to measure carbon stored in forests, and monitors forest growth over time.


Carbon Clean raises $150M in carbon capture funding round

Carbon Clean (London, UK) has raised $150 million from lead investor Chevron and a series of global venture capital companies, institutional investors and heavy industrial players. According to Carbon Clean, it is the largest ever equity funding round for a point source carbon capture company; to date, the company has raised $195 million. Carbon Clean plans collaborate with industrial partners and governments to manufacture and ship hundreds of fully modular carbon capture units to industrial facilities every year. The company’s technology, CycloneCC, is described as a “game changer” for hard-to-abate sectors like steel, cement, and oil and gas, with a footprint 10 times smaller than conventional carbon capture and the potential to reduce CapEx and OpEx by up to 50% and drive down the cost of carbon capture to $30 per tonne on average.


Reducing air pollution yields unexpected result

A National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) study published in the journal Science Advances reveals that reducing particulate air pollution in Europe and North America has contributed to an increase in the number of tropical cyclones in the North Atlantic basin and a decrease in the Southern Hemisphere. The reduction in human-caused air pollution in the Northern Hemisphere, estimated to be a 50% drop in concentration from 1980 to 2020, has led to surface warming over the tropical Atlantic Ocean, which contributes to more frequent tropical cyclones. Without significant amounts of particulate pollution to reflect sunlight, the ocean absorbs more heat and warms faster. A warming Atlantic Ocean has been a key ingredient in a 33% increase in the number of tropical cyclones during the 40-year study period.


Scientists create renewable biocement from waste

Scientists from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) have found a way to create biocement from waste. The NTU scientists have managed to use two common waste materials—industrial carbide sludge and urea—to create biocement, a renewable form of cement that uses bacteria to form a hardening reaction that binds soil into a solid block. The research team, led by Professor Chu Jian, chair of the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering, showed in a proof-of-concept research paper in the Journal of Environmental Chemical Engineering that the biocement could potentially become a sustainable and cost-effective method for soil improvement, such as strengthening the ground for use in construction or excavation, controlling beach erosion, reducing dust or wind erosion in the desert or building freshwater reservoirs on beaches or in the desert.


Click Here to return to the EBI News home page and read about the latest stories.

Scroll down to sign up for complimentary EBI News delivered to your inbox.