Weekly News Bulletin: Nov. 27-Dec. 3, 2007


Deffenbaugh Industries Inc. to be acquired by DLJ Merchant Banking Partners

Shawnee-based Deffenbaugh Industries Inc. agreed to be acquired by DLJ Merchant Banking Partners, a private equity investment affiliate of Credit Suisse. Terms of the deal which will close by Dec. 31, were not disclosed. However, some experts estimate the price to be between $300 million and $350 million. Deffenbaugh is about the 20th largest solid waste firm and perhaps the sixth or seventh largest privately held firm in the US with estimated annual revenues of nearly $170 million in 2006. The company, which grew from a one-truck trash hauling operation 50 years ago, today employs 1,900 and provides residential and commercial waste collection, transportation and disposal for about 450,000 customers in Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Iowa, and owns the 800-plus-acre Johnson County Landfill...Read More »



Pressure from States and Industry Builds for Federal E-Waste Bill

Lawmakers drafting a federal e-waste legislation are unlikely to "shop it around for consensus" said Scott Cassel, executive director of the Product Stewardship Institute. He expects to see legislation soon owing to pressure from state governments and the electronics industry for a unified solution. Already five states have enacted their own legislation this year. Many states want federal action by 2008. A federal bill will have to be comprehensive enough to attract consensus from states with or seeking to introduce their own legislation. A blanket preemption of state laws will likely result in a fight especially since some states have adopted fundamentally different approaches to the problem...Read More »



Republic Gets Another Setback at Countywide Landfill

Republic Services recently reported another setback for its Countywide landfill where the Stark County (Ohio) Health Department wants to suspend its operating license, after problems including underground fires, leakage and foul odors. It is a surprising event given the many concessions that Republic has made with the OhioEPA over the landfill's operation. The landfill and related businesses generate about $15 million in annual revenue. Closing it would result in a $100 million charge to the company. The company however, remains confident that sufficient legal remedy exists to keep the landfill operating. They also assert that all necessary repairs have been made to remove any threat to the environment...Read More »



Republic Sells Living Earth Technology to Hunt Group for $37 Million

Republic Services Inc said it sold its Living Earth Technology Co business in Texas for about $37 million to Hunt Special Situations Group, L.P. Living Earth Technology, which provides compost, mulch and soil and other landscape materials to retailers, landscaping contractors and nurseries, has average annual revenue of about $50 million. "The divestiture of non-core assets is consistent with Republic's long- term business strategy," said James E. O'Connor, Chairman and CEO...Read More »



Report Suggests NJ Could Power 1 Million Homes from Waste by 2020

A report by the New Jersey state Board of Public Utilities asserts that utilization of landfill gases and biomass could generate enough electricity to power a million homes. Proper diversion of biomass, which includes corn, paper, grass clippings and used cooking grease, among others could generate 300 million gallons of fuel every year, representing 5% of the state's needs. This could happen by 2020 if the state invests significantly in the proper technologies, collection systems and infrastructure over the next 13 years...Read More »



SWANA States Position on STB Exemption of Rail Facilities

The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) wants to set the record straight with regard to rail-based solid waste transfer facilities. "While SWANA favors smooth operation of this country's rail system ... [it also] supports the traditional state and local responsibilities for solid waste management facilities ... [and] opposes any exception based on the proximity of the waste handling site to railroad lines." The Surface Transportation Board (STB) which regulates railroads has recently proposed an exemption for waste processing facilities located on railroad property. SWANA believes that this "removes critical controls that are essential to mitigating environmental degradation and public health and safety hazards."...Read More »



Prometheus Energy Buys Montauk Interest in Bowerman Landfill Project

Prometheus Energy has acquired the remaining 50% interest in Apollo Energy III LLC, owned by Montauk Energy Capital LLC, for $125,000 cash and about 1.28 million company shares. The payment also includes a one-year note issued by Apollo for $725,000. Apollo owns and operates a landfill gas to liquefied natural gas production facility currently being commissioned at the Frank R. Bowerman Landfill in Irvine, CA...Read More »



Waste Connections Expects 4Q Charge of $1 Million Related to Strike

Waste Connections Inc. said that a strike of about 55 workers in El Paso, Texas will likely result in a fourth quarter charge or additional costs of $1 million. The company said that it had transferred additional personnel to join the majority of drivers not striking in order to minimize the economic effect and train permanent strike replacements...Read More »



Alter Nrg Reports Third Quarter Activities and Financial Results

Canadian-based Alter Nrg, which develops plasma gasification technology, reported improved third quarter financial results. Along with those results, the company summarized many significant milestones reached during the quarter, including: a strategic joint venture with Jacoby Energy Development to exclusively market the Westinghouse Plasma gasification technology in Canada and the US, an option to invest up to 25% in the world's largest plasma gasification project in St. Lucie, Florida, preliminary approval for the first retrofit of a coal power plant to plasma gasification in Somerset Massachusetts, four new projects in Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota and Florida using WPC plasma technology, and a private placement with Coghill Capital Management for $10 million, among other accomplishments...Read More »



Stericycle Announces Final Australia Arbitration Award

Medical waste company Stericycle will take a $6.2 million, or $0.07 per share, fourth quarter charge, due to an arbitrator's final ruling in its dispute with SteriCorp Ltd of Melbourne, Australia. Stericycle will receive $8.2 million on its claim related to an equipment supply agreement but will have to pay SteriCorp $14.5 million plus two-thirds of their attorneys fees...Read More »



Study Sees Potential for Improving Electronics Waste Recovery in Europe

A study for the European Commission concludes significant potential to improve the collection and recycling of Europe's electronic waste. It estimates that currently only about 25% of Europe's medium sized household appliances and 40% of larger appliances are collected for salvage and recycling. The study suggests that possible long-term recovery rates of 60% for small appliances and 75% for larger ones would lead to an annual harvest of 5.3 million tons by 2011 up from 2.2 million tons currently. Low public awareness is seen as a major cause and obstacle for improving recovery rates...Read More »



Casella Commits to Cut Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 10%

Casella Waste Systems has committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 10% during the period 2005 to 2012. That amounts to 100,000 metric tons of CO2 equivalents each year. Casella is to only solid waste company to be a member of the US EPA's Climate Leaders Program which seeks to develop long-term climate change strategies. To achieve its goals, Casella will develop landfill-gas-to-energy facilities at six of its landfills, invest in more alternative fuel vehicles, and deploy energy conservation programs at its facilities and through education of its 2,800 employees...Read More »



Casella to Release 2Q Results on Dec. 5 and Host Conference Call

Casella Waste Systems will release second fiscal quarter 2008 financial results at the close of markets on Wednesday, December 5 and host a conference call to discuss them on the following day at 10 a.m. ET...Read More »



Dentists Do Their Part to Save the Planet

The American Dental Association testified before Congress that it is promoting best management practices (BMPs) aimed at protecting the environment. For example, dentists now use encapsulated amalgam, which contain only a small amount of elemental mercury mixed with other powdered metals thus eliminating the use of bulk mercury. Other BMPs assure a significant reduction in the amount of dental amalgam that enters the waste stream...Read More »


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