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EBI News for September 07, 2022 – ICF expands environmental capabilities for large infrastructure projects

EBI News for September 07, 2022 – The following news section contains the latest stories for the environmental industry. Including, ICF expands environmental capabilities for large infrastructure projects, acquisitions, and more!

ICF expands environmental capabilities for large infrastructure projects

ICF (Fairfax, Va.) has acquired Blanton & Associates Inc. (Austin, Texas), an environmental consulting and project management firm which supports infrastructure projects in key markets, including transportation, energy and water. A partner to state and local agencies in Texas, Blanton strengthens ICF’s presence at a time when the state is set to receive significant federal investment under the bipartisan infrastructure law. Throughout its 25-year history, Blanton has provided environmental and scientific services to the Texas Department of Transportation. The firm also has extensive renewable energy experience, having supported more than 500 solar and wind energy projects in over 30 states and been involved in more than half of all of Texas’ wind energy projects by megawatt. Blanton’s 75-person team includes biologists, wetland scientists, environmental planners, geologists, archaeologists, and GIS practitioners. “Having partnered successfully on water and habitat conservation planning projects for many years, our companies know each other well,” said Don Blanton, president of Blanton & Associates.


GHD assesses water risk to the global economy

Droughts, floods, and storms could result in a total loss of US$5.6 trillion to GDP across seven countries between 2022-2050, according to a report by global professional services company GHD (Sydney, Australia). Aquanomics: The Economics of Water Risk and Future Resilience projects the economic impact of water risk in Australia, Canada, China, the Philippines, UAE, UK, and United States between now and 2030 at an estimated US$1.3 trillion. In terms of total water-related GDP losses between 2022-2050, GHD predicts that the United States will be hit hardest while, counter-intuitively, UAE—one of the world’s driest countries—is expected to be the least affected. The report forecasts water risk impact on five economic sectors, with manufacturing and distribution the most heavily affected, facing total output losses of US$4.211 trillion by 2050. Despite the connection between water and energy systems, the energy and utilities sector is estimated to be the least affected, with total projected output losses of US$237 billion.


Ramboll announces strongest organic half-year growth in a decade

Ramboll (Copenhagen, Denmark) reported gross revenue was up by 10.4% to DKK 7.9 billion in the first half of 2022 compared to 1.4% in the first half of 2021. With 8.3% organic growth, Ramboll delivered the best half-year organic growth in a decade, led by sustainable solutions, particularly green energy and low-carbon buildings. Ramboll’s order book showed an increase of 10% compared to year-end 2021. According to Group CEO Jens-Peter Saul, Ramboll’s performance “shows that we are on the right track with our new strategy, The Partner for Sustainable Change which over the coming four years will focus our entire portfolio towards sustainability and aims to make Ramboll the global leader in the green energy transition.” In the first half of 2022, Ramboll’s Energy, Buildings and Ramboll Management Consulting business units saw strong double-digit growth. In the UK and Germany, growth was close to 20%. 


GZA wins contracts to provide climate adaptation and resiliency services

GZA (Norwood, Mass.) has been awarded contracts for projects in four Connecticut towns—Fairfield, Groton, Old Saybrook, and Stratford—to provide climate adaptation, resiliency, sustainability, and hazard mitigation plans and studies. The new contracts expand GZA’s role advising local communities on natural hazard risk management, resilience, and climate adaptation. GZA has completed more than $20 million in natural hazard consulting services since 2010, including Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Multi-Hazard Natural Hazard Mitigation Plans and FEMA Flood Mitigation Assistance grant applications. “Our assessments, plans, and experience with the complexities of grant-approval procedures enable cities and towns to compete for and win federal and state funding to improve their resilience to flooding, storms, rising sea levels, and impacts of climate change,” said GZA President and CEO Patrick Sheehan.


Acquisition fuels Covanta’s strategy in sustainable materials management 

Covanta (Morristown, N.J.), a waste-to-energy and industrial services company, announced the acquisition of Biologic Environmental Services and Waste Solutions (Haywood, Calif.). This is Covanta’s latest in a series of acquisitions since its purchase by EQT Infrastructure V fund, expanding the company’s geographical footprint further west into California markets. Covanta will integrate Biologic’s fully permitted Northern and Southern California facilities into its portfolio of zero carbon and zero waste-to-landfill services. According to Covanta, this will further diversify its customer offerings and present significant growth potential from operating permits in areas including profiled waste and USDA regulated garbage and maritime waste.


ADS announces $65M investment in stormwater engineering and technology center

Advanced Drainage Systems Inc. (ADS, Hilliard, Ohio), a leading manufacturer of high performance plastic pipe and drainage products—and one of the largest plastic recyclers in North America—announced plans to invest approximately $65 million in a new 110,000-square-foot product development facility. “The ADS Engineering & Technology Center will be the most advanced stormwater engineering center in the world dedicated to product engineering, material science—including recycled plastics—and manufacturing technologies,” said ADS President and CEO Scott Barbour. “In this new center, our team of engineers, scientists, and technicians will build sustainable solutions that utilize recycled plastics to improve quality of life in communities across North America.” The expansion will allow ADS to consolidate all product development, testing and manufacturing engineering development into one central location.


Over 75% of plastic in Great Pacific Garbage Patch originates from fishing

Ocean Cleanup (Rotterdam, Netherlands) has published new research in the journal Scientific Reports showing that the Great Pacific Garbage Patch (GPGP) is largely composed of fishing-related plastic waste, with 75% to 86% of all plastic waste in the GPGP identified as coming from offshore fishing activity. Analysis also found that major industrialized fishing nations (including the United States, China, Japan and Korea) are the principal producers of fishing waste found in the GPGP, an area three times the size of France and the world’s largest accumulation of floating ocean plastic. At a global level, emissions from rivers remain by far the largest source of plastic pollution into the oceans, but plastic originating from fishing activities must also be tackled, Ocean Cleanup said.


Tetra Tech wins $100M EPA global climate change contract

The U.S. EPA’s Office of Research and Development has awarded Tetra Tech Inc. (Pasadena, Calif.) a five-year single-award $100-million contract to assess human health and ecological risks associated with global climate change. Tetra Tech will provide technical support to assess the ability of ecosystems to adapt to varying conditions from factors such as climate change, urbanization, and habitat loss. Tetra Tech’s scientists and engineers will develop predictive models for climate scenarios including sea-level rise, storm surges, and threats to drinking water supplies. 


Bernhard Capital expands environmental platform with BEM Systems 

Environmental Systems Group (ESG, Baton Rouge, La.) announced the acquisition of BEM Systems Inc. (Chatham, N.J.), a consulting, engineering and information management firm. Environmental Systems Group was formed in July 2022 by Bernhard Capital Partners to create a dedicated environmental service platform. This transaction expands the platform’s geographic reach into the Northeast and Alaska and complements ESG’s recent acquisition of KC Harvey Environmental LLC, an environmental and natural resources firm. Since 1990, BEM Systems has provided environmental engineering consulting services and internally developed custom data management solutions.


Bowman expands into marine engineering

Bowman Consulting (Reston, Va.) announced the purchase of Anchor Consultants LLC (Chadds Ford, Pa.), a specialist in waterfront infrastructure along coastal and inland waterways throughout North America. “The acquisition of Anchor furthers our diversification initiative, adding to our customer base that builds and maintains critical infrastructure,” said CEO Gary Bowman. The Anchor acquisition is expected to contribute approximately $2.5 million of annualized net service billing initially and be immediately accretive. Anchor is Bowman’s fifth acquisition of 2022 bringing total annualized net revenue acquired this year to just under $50 million. Bowman has over 1,700 employees and more than 65 offices throughout the United States.


Accenture acquires Carbon Intelligence

Accenture (Dublin, Ireland) announced the acquisition of Carbon Intelligence (London, UK), adding more than 160 professionals to its rapidly growing group of data scientists, consultants and sustainability experts. Carbon Intelligence is focused on helping global businesses understand their overall carbon footprints and ways to reduce them. Carbon Intelligence is Accenture’s fifth sustainability-focused acquisition in the last year following Greenfish in France, Belgium and the Netherlands, akzente in Germany, Avieco in the UK and Zestgroup in the Netherlands. 


Ndustrial expands energy platform into recycling market

Ndustrial (Raleigh, N.C.), a company that helps businesses control production, improve energy efficiency, and eliminate waste, is expanding its services into the recycling market. Ndustrial reported it has already enabled the global tire recycler Genan (Houston) to save hundreds of thousands in energy costs by automating its response to electricity price spikes. We’ve seen electricity prices spike by a factor of 100 during extreme weather events,” said Jason Massey, CEO at Ndustrial. “When we help Genan avoid high energy rate periods, we’re helping them improve production efficiency and lower costs – while simultaneously creating grid stability.” According to Ndustrial, recycling facilities like materials recovery facilities and shredding operations are excellent candidates for cutting energy costs.

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