EMS merges with Biognie
Environmental Management Solutions Inc. (EMS) and Biognie S.R.D.C Inc. recently completed their merger which combines their complementary operations. EMS has acquired all the shares of privately held Biognie for $55 million through a combination of cash and EMS shares. Biognie specializes in onsite and offsite soil treatment and reclamation for public and private sector clients across Canada, the United States, France, and the United Kingdom. With the completion of the merger, EMS has three business units: site assessment and remediation, organic waste processing, and tank testing and calibration. Subsidiaries include Biognie Inc., GSI Environment Inc. and Tanknology Canada Inc.
Waste Services announces $100 Financing
Waste Services, Inc. has announced its intention to increase the term loans under its existing Senior Secured Credit Facility by $100 million, as well as obtain lender consents for certain other modifications to the credit agreement. Net proceeds from the proposed term loans will be used to fund the previously announced acquisitions of Pro Disposal and the SLD Landfill in Florida, as well as to repay outstanding borrowings under the company’s revolving credit facility.
Edmonton to build gasification plant
The City of Edmonton, the Province of Alberta and company Epcor have announced they will collaborate to construct an $87 million gasification plant at the Edmonton Waste Management Centre by 2012. The plant will be innovative in making synthetic gas out of municipal waste — plastics, contaminated paper, textiles, etc. — that can’t be composted or recycled.
The gas will be converted into 10 megawatts of electricity annually, or enough to power the waste facility and much of the surrounding industrial infrastructure. The plant will reduce greenhouse gas emissions annually by 150,000 tonnes, equivalent to removing 37,500 cars from Edmonton roads, and help divert up to 90 per cent of our household waste from landfill.
The gasification plant is a high-tech complement to the Clover Bar landfill’s gas project, which employs older technology to recover methane from the facility’s 12 million tonnes of buried waste.
OWMA hired for blue box project
The Ontario Waste Management Association (OWMA) has been engaged by Stewardship Ontario (SO) to undertake a comprehensive private sector assessment of best practices as it relates to the design and delivery of municipal blue box programs. The cooperative initiative is currently underway and is engaging the experience and expertise of OWMA members in identifying those practices that provide the foundation for sustainable and cost-effective municipal recycling. Nigel Guilford of Guilford and Associates Inc. has been retained by OWMA to lead the research project. The target date for completion of the project is December 31, 2006 and the project timelines will provide an opportunity for all OWMA members to contribute to the project findings. The project report will reflect a “private sector perspective” and will contribute to the more expansive efforts by Stewardship Ontario to identify blue box best practices.
Niagara landfill expansion approved
Niagara Waste Systems landfill expansion project recently received environmental assessment approval from the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. The EA approval allows for the landfill to accept 850,000 tonnes of waste per year, of which 100,000 tonnes per annum must be reserved for the Niagara Region’s municipal waste; the remainder is for the industrial, commercial and institutional sectors. Before Niagara Waste Systems can proceed, the landfill proposal must be reviewed and approved by the ministry under the Environmental Protection Act and the Ontario Water Resources Act.
WM Canada receives conservation awards
Waste Management Inc. has announced that eight of its landfill sites across Canada have received the Wildlife Habitat Council’s (WHC) International Accreditation. Three of the awarded sites were previously certified and have received re-certification status from WHC. The accreditation recognizes commendable wildlife habitat management and environmental education programs at the individual sites. The awards were announced November 14 at the WHC’s 18th Annual Symposium in Baltimore, Maryland.
“We are extremely proud of the positive difference we are making in communities across Canada,” says Waste Management’s vice president of environment Greg Cekander. “As the industry leader in waste and environmental services, we are strongly committed to being responsible stewards of the environment. Landfill management practices that work in harmony with nature are one of the hallmarks of Waste Management’s environmental leadership.”
Waste Management landfill sites in Canada that received certification status include: Ottawa (Ontario); Richmond (Ontario), Ste. Sophie (Quebec); Magog (Quebec) Saint Nicephore (Quebec). Waste Management sites in Canada that received re-certification status include: Blackwell (Sarnia, Ontario); Petrolia (Ontario); and Warwick (Watford, Ontario).
UK municipal waste shows downturn
The of waste in the United Kingdom may have turned, according to recently released figures that show the amount of municipal solid waste dropped in 2005 by three per cent — the biggest drop on record. This was accompanied by a 10 per cent reduction (1.9 million tonnes) in municipal waste sent to landfill. Recycling increased to 27 per cent — nearly four times higher than in 1996-97.
Poor marks for beverage container recycling
“Waste and Opportunity: U.S. Beverage Container Recycling Scorecard and Report” is a report card on the beverage industry’s recycling efforts released by corporate social responsibility group “As You Sow” and the Container Recycling Institute. The report gave PepsiCo and Coca-Cola Co. the highest grades; both earned a C. All other companies scored D- or F, with Cadbury Schweppes, Cott, and National Beverage performing the worst.
“Both Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have shown some leadership by using 10 per cent recycled content in plastic bottles and promising to work with competitors toward setting beverage container recovery goals,” says As You Sow research director Nishita Bakshi, author of the report. “However, most other companies have done little to nothing to significantly improve recycling rates.”
American consumers purchase over 500 million beverage bottles and cans, on average, every day. Only one third are recycled while two thirds are landfilled, incinerated or littered. This results in major pollution and energy impacts, and depletion of aluminum ore and petroleum resources. Producing containers using virgin resources increases greenhouse gas emissions. If the current container recycling rate of 34 per cent were increased to 80 per cent, avoided greenhouse gas emissions would be equivalent to taking 2.4 million cars off the road for one year, the report says.
The recycling report makes five recommendations for beverage companies to reduce environmental impact: use higher levels of recycled content in their bottles; set a national beverage container recovery goal (and support public policies and voluntary measures that increase recycling); develop design innovations leading to less packaging material; and, publicly report on their progress to stakeholders.
Visit www.container-recycling.organd www.bottl
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