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EBI News for April 10, 2024 – New data demonstrates need for recommitment to plastics recycling

EBI News for April 10, 2024 – The following news section contains the latest stories for the environmental industry. Including, new data demonstrates need for recommitment to plastics recycling, acquisitions, and more!

Apex strengthens presence in Pacific Northwest

Apex Companies LLC (Rockville, Md.) announced the acquisition of PBS Engineering and Environmental Inc. (Portland, Ore.), a regional provider of environmental consulting and engineering services. Founded in 1982, PBS has eight locations across Oregon and Washington and around 300 professionals with expertise in engineering, surveying and UAS, health and safety, and environmental services. Apex is a national multidisciplinary consulting and engineering services firm, ranked number 26 on the EBJ list Top 600+ U.S. Environmental Consulting & Engineering Firms, 2022. PBS will operate as PBS, an Apex Company, within Apex’s West Region Business Unit. Morgan Stanley Capital Partners announced its acquisition of Apex in February 2023.


Stantec chosen for Crawford Nickel Project

Canada Nickel Company has selected Stantec (Edmonton, Canada) to provide environmental consulting services for the Crawford Nickel Project. Canada Nickel has proposed to construct, operate, and eventually decommission the open-pit nickel-cobalt mine, located in Ontario’s Timmins Nickel District. This critical minerals project, expected to be one of the largest nickel sulfide operations in the world, will supply nickel and cobalt to the electric vehicle market. Other metals such as cobalt, chromium, palladium, and platinum will also be recovered. Stantec will prepare an Impact Statement, class environmental assessments, and technical studies for mitigation and follow-up. The project is expected to produce nearly 50,000 tons of nickel annually and operate for over 40 years. The mine is also expected to become one of Canada’s largest carbon-storage facilities. 


AECOM partners with EarthSoft 

AECOM (Dallas) announced a partnership to combine AECOM’s remediation expertise with environmental data management software from EarthSoft (Pensacola, Fla.). PlanEngage, AECOM’s interactive platform for project and stakeholder engagement, will be integrated with EQuIS, EarthSoft’s environmental and geotechnical data platform. Together they will help unify and visualize complex environmental data for remediation projects. “As communities face new remediation challenges, there’s an unprecedented opportunity for project teams to leverage ever-greater quantities of data to sharpen their decision-making,” said Todd Battley, AECOM’s chief strategy officer.


American Battery Technology awarded $40M tax credit

American Battery Technology Company (ABTC, Reno, Nev.), a company commercializing technologies for primary battery minerals manufacturing and secondary minerals lithium-ion battery recycling, has been selected for an additional award of $40.5 million for the design and construction of a new commercial battery recycling facility. As with ABTC’s initial $20 million tax credit award, the new award was granted following a competitive U.S. Department of Energy review process. American Battery is commercializing a recycling process that uses “strategic de-manufacturing process” followed by a targeted chemical extraction train to recover battery materials with high yields, low cost, and a low environmental footprint. 


Veolia advances PFAS mitigation in drinking water

Veolia (Paris, France), a private operator of water services in the United States, announced that it has reached a new milestone in its treatment of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in America’s drinking water, with more than 30 sites now reporting no detectable levels of regulated PFAS chemicals. The advanced effort includes new treatment installed at 17 drinking water wells in the state of New York, with construction underway on additional projects in four states. To date, Veolia has treated more than 2.1 billion gallons of drinking water in the country using more than 1 million pounds of granular activated carbon and other materials. Veolia said it has conducted almost 10,000 water sample analyses in the United States in the past five years to determine the best treatment options across a range of source water chemistries, physical site constraints and equipment lifecycle costs.


New data demonstrates need for recommitment to plastics recycling

Recyclers recovered just over 5 billion pounds of post-consumer plastic for recycling in the United States in 2022, a drop of 71 million pounds or about 1.4% from 2021, according to data released by the Assn. of Plastic Recyclers (APR), Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), and U.S. Plastics Pact. Prepared by Stina Inc., the 2022 U.S. Post-consumer Plastic Recycling Data Dashboard details U.S. sourced post-consumer plastic recovered for recycling. Inflationary pressure on consumer goods markets was a primary reason given for the weaker performance. Data shows that plastic recovered in 2022 included Bottles (56%); Non-Bottle Rigids (22%), Film (22%) and Other Plastics (0.2%). North American reclaimers acquired 94% of plastic recovered for recycling in the United States, while export overseas fell to 6%. “APR’s recycler members have the capacity to recycle more material today if they could just get more supply through collection programs,” said APR President and CEO Steve Alexander. “We need state and federal policies that ensure minimum recycled content standards for recycled content to advance circularity for plastic.”


AtkinsRéalis wins contract to develop hydrogen hub in Quebec

AtkinsRéalis (Montreal, Canada) has been awarded a contract by TESCanada H2 Inc. to provide front-end engineering and design services for the Projet Mauricie green hydrogen hub in Quebec. Projet Mauricie aims to produce up to 70,000 tonnes per year of green hydrogen, which will be used to decarbonize industrial processes and heavy transportation in Quebec. The project is expected to reduce emissions by 800,000 tonnes CO2eq per year. As part of the project, clean electricity will largely be supplied by new, purpose-built renewable power generation including wind and solar farms totaling 1,000 MW. To be commissioned in 2028, it is one of the largest clean hydrogen projects in Canada.


Alaska selects EA for hazardous substance support contract

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has selected EA Engineering, Science, and Technology Inc. PBC (Hunt Valley, Md.) to provide hazardous substance assessment, cleanup, monitoring, and risk assessment services. The initial contract term extends through October 2028, with optional renewal terms for an additional five years. EA first established operations in Alaska in 1992 and maintains offices in Anchorage and Fairbanks. EA personnel have “extensive experience in addressing the logistical, safety, and technical issues related to remote/austere locations in Arctic and Subarctic environments,” noted Jen Martin Bouchard, vice president and Pacific business unit director.


California faces sulfuryl fluoride challenge 

California, a state known for forward greenhouse gas reduction policies, is the nation’s greatest emitter of sulfuryl fluoride, according to a study led by Johns Hopkins University. The United States is responsible for as much as 17% of global emissions of sulfuryl fluoride, with 60–85% of that coming primarily from Los Angeles, Orange, and San Diego counties. Analyzing more than 15,000 air samples collected by NOAA Global Monitoring Laboratory, the Johns Hopkins team found that the vast majority of the state’s emissions resulted from structural fumigation for termite control, with agricultural and commodities fumigation also contributing. Once emitted, the gas spreads and stays for more than 40 years in the atmosphere. “Without some form of intervention, sulfuryl fluoride is going to keep accumulating in our atmosphere,” said lead author Dylan Gaeta. “For most greenhouse gases, California has been very intentional about how it’s going to reduce emissions. This one has slipped under the radar.” Results were published in Communications Earth & Environment.


Langan makes second acquisition in Texas

Langan Engineering & Environmental Services (Parsippany, N.J.) announced the acquisition of JPH Land Surveying Inc. (Dallas-Fort Worth) with offices in Houston and Austin. This is Langan’s second acquisition in Texas. “Texas continues to be a strategic focus for Langan. By growing our survey practice in the region via this

acquisition we will be better able to support clients throughout the state,” said David T. Gockel, Langan’s president and CEO. With the acquisition of JPH, Langan has 125 employees in Texas. Founded in 1970, Langan employs 1,600 professionals and has 40 offices throughout the United States. Langan announced a partnership with Towerbrook Capital Partners in October 2023.


AECOM to provide environmental services for NASA

AECOM (Dallas) has been selected by NASA to provide services at facilities across the United States as part of the NASA Environmental Restoration and Compliance Contract (NERCC).  Under this five-year contract, AECOM’s tasks will include environmental sampling; investigations; human, health, and ecological risk assessments; and remediation. The NERCC will also serve as the primary contracting vehicle for NASA’s PFAS-related cleanup efforts. The company will also provide compliance and sustainability services across NASA facilities such as pollution prevention, recycling and hazardous materials management.

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