Weekly News Bulletin: Oct. 9-15, 2007


Waste Industry Looks to Congress to Close Rail Loophole

Under the guidance of Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), the waste industry awaits Congressional lawmakers to move legislation that will close a loophole in federal transportation law that allows rail waste operations to avoid environmental requirements that apply to everyone else. His measure passed the Senate last month but some fear that it does not go far enough, especially with regard to the processing of construction and demolition debris stored on rail-based waste sites. There is further concern that facilities might still win particular exemptions from state and local environmental regulations. The House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee is expected to back a strict companion version of Lautenberg's original bill...Read More »



Chicago Considers Privatizing Recycling and Transfer Stations

The city of Chicago is considering privatizing via long-term lease the city's three recycling and transfer facilities. Those facilities are currently operated under a five-year, $78.8 million contract held by Allied Waste Transportation. Proceeds from the waste transfer lease could be used to finance the otherwise cost-prohibitive switch to suburban-style, curbside recycling citywide. The plan would be to expand that program to 211 thousand households from the 80 thousand currently being served...Read More »



SPSA Intends to Stop Accepting Out-of-State Waste Next Year

Virginia's Southeastern Public Service Authority (SPSA) plans to stop accepting out-of-state waste by next year. Those wastes emanate mainly from New York and North Carolina and account for about $1 million in revenues. It has been a controversial issue ever since one of its eight members, the City of Chesapeake sued on those grounds to break its contract with the Authority. Last year, SPSA was in negotiations with Covanta to import 2,500 tons per day into Portsmouth, but that deal later collapsed under withering opposition. However, the recent Supreme Court decision on Oneida-Herkimer has given the agency more options including the ability to exert flow controls which might direct all wastes through SPSA facilities rather than to those of private waste firms...Read More »



Sen. Lieberman Confident of a Cap-and-Trade Law in Current Session

Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-CT) says that Congress is close to passing legislation during the current session that would establish a federal cap-and-trade program for controlling greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the United States. "I believe there is a substantial and increasing likelihood that both the Senate and the House will, by the end of next year, pass legislation mandating cuts in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions," the senator said during the World Environment Center's Washington Sustainability Forum in Washington, D.C. He will need more than 60 votes to override a threatened veto by President Bush...Read More »



OhioEPA is Urging Countywide Landfill to Mitigate Spread of Fire

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is urging the Countywide Recycling and Disposal Facility in Stark County to stop utilizing a 13-acre portion of the 6,000 ton per day, 258-acre landfill deemed to be on fire. OhioEPA wants the landfill owner Republic Services to construct a firebreak and take other agency approved measures to halt the migration of fires caused by aluminum chemical reactions...Read More »



Sonoco Products Acquires Six Plants from Caraustar

Sonoco Products Co., the world's largest maker of rigid paperboard containers, acquired the fiber containers and industrial plastic carriers assets of Caraustar Industries Inc. The acquisition includes six plants that employ 260 people whom make recycled paperboard containers and plastic cores, thread carriers and other packaging. Taken together, they generate about $50 million in annual sales...Read More »



WCA Waste Makes Acquisitions in Alabama, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas

WCA Waste Corp. has made five "tuck-in" acquisitions in Alabama, North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas. Among them are Waste Pro Services, LLC of Houston which operates 17 routes, two tuck-in acquisitions in North Carolina, with 11 routes in Greensboro and four in Raleigh, Big Red Containers, located in Oklahoma, and Roll-Off Rentals in Huntsville, Alabama. "This allows us to increase route destiny and internalize the volume which had not previously been taken to one of our landfills," said Tom Fatjo, chairman of WCA...Read More »



PPL Partners with Greater Lebanon Refuse Authority on Renewable Energy

Power company PPL Corp. has teamed up with the Greater Lebanon Refuse Authority and opened a renewable energy facility that will use captured methane to create enough fuel to power 2,500 homes. PPL's PPL Renewable Energy unit plans to invest more than $100 million in additional renewable energy projects in the next five years. The unit has developed renewable energy projects that total more than fifteen megawatts of generation. These include solar panel installations and landfill gas projects in Pennsylvania and New Jersey...Read More »



Connecticut Waste Hauler Fights Back, Sues Customers

In a twist of fate, Connecticut carting company Automated Waste Disposal, owned by James Galante who has been indicted in an ongoing mob corruption and racketeering scam, is now suing 19 area business and a rival firm for poaching his customers. Automated Waste charges that the businesses are breaching their contracts while Mid-Hudson Waste of Mahopac is engaging in "tortious interference" by encouraging them to do so. The 19 business acting as one consolidated defendant filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds of the illegal business practices by the plaintiff...Read More »



Veolia Environmental Services Wins 10-Year Gasification Contract

Veolia Environmental Services won a 10-year contract to operate a gasification unit at Dow Corning's Midland, Michigan chemical plant. The gasification process will convert hazardous chlorinated organic liquids produced at the Dow Corning plant into two usable products aqueous hydrochloric acid (HCL) and synthetic natural gas (Syngas). It removes the need to transport for offsite disposal and avoids the emissions of greenhouse gases. "This is a very cutting-edge process. It is the first time that the gasification process will be used commercially to recycle chlorinated organic liquids in the US," said Philippe Martin, President and CEO of Veolia ES Technical Solutions...Read More »



American Electric Power Agrees to Pay Historic $4.6 Billion Settlement

American Electric Power has agreed to settle a long-running federal lawsuit by agreeing to pay a $4.6 billion fine, pay a $15 million penalty, and spend $60 million on projects to mitigate the adverse effects of its past excess emissions. The record settlement was announced today by the Department of Justice and the Environmental Protection Agency. The lawsuit was originally filed in 1999. Under the Clean Air Act, any substantial modification of an existing power generation plant had to include new technology to cut emissions. But under the Bush Administration, the EPA attempted to roll back that requirement under certain circumstances. In March 2006, a federal appeals court struck down the EPA's exemption...Read More »



Wal-Mart Canada to Expand Successful Recycling Program

Wal-Mart Canada Corp. plans to expand its recycling program in stores nationwide following a successful pilot project in approximately one-third of its 293 outlets. The program uses a baler to create "sandwiches" comprised of a layer of plastic film pressed between two layers of cardboard. Plastic film and cardboard account for more than half of the waste generated by Wal-Mart store operations...Read More »



Republic to Announce 3rd Quarter on November 6

Moody's Investors Service has placed the 'Baa2' senior unsecured debt rating of Republic Services Inc. (NYSE: RSG) on review for possible upgrade, citing Republic's consistent pace of internal revenue growth, the sustainability of its profit margins and moderate leverage for the current rating category. Meanwhile, Republic said that it will host a conference call at 8:30 a.m. (Eastern) on November 6 to announce and discuss third quarter financial results...Read More »



Waste Industries USA to Announce 3rd Quarter on October 30

Waste Industries USA, Inc. will announce third quarter financial results at the close of markets on October 30 and host a conference call the following day at 2 p.m. (Eastern) to discuss them...Read More »



WCA Waste Corp. to Announce 3rd Quarter on October 31

WCA Waste Corp. will announce third quarter financial results at the close of markets on October 31, and host a conference call the next day at 8:30 a.m. (Eastern) to discuss them...Read More »



Heil Promotes McHugh New Director of North American Sales

Heil Environmental promoted Bob McHugh to director of North American sales. McHugh has been with Heil since 1990 having joined as a product support manager. In 2001, he assisted in leading a team to obtain ISO 9001:2000 certification making Heil the first refuse collection vehicle manufacturer in the United States to do so...Read More »



NSWMA to Administer OSHA Grant for New Driver Safety Program

The National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) said that its driver safety training program has been approved by the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). According to NSWMA's General Counsel David Biderman, "The program will focus on driver safety and the prevention of work-related motor vehicle accidents and fatalities, through space management training of up to 384 refuse industry drivers in 12 separate locations over a four week period." NSWMA has previously provided safety training tools under OSHA's grant program through its Be Safe, Be Proud video series...Read More »


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