Weekly News Bulletin: Mar. 29-Apr. 4, 2011


EPA Sends Solid Waste Definition Rule to White House for Review

The EPA has sent its revised and much anticipated definition of solid waste rule to the White House for review. The rule determines whether materials are considered solid waste or hazardous waste under the Resource Conservation & Recovery Act (RCRA) which determines the stringency of controls in their handling. The latest proposal is required as part of a settlement agreement with environmental groups who challenged the Bush-era rule in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, alleging that exemptions in the rule meant to encourage recycling of wastes that otherwise would have been considered hazardous, went too far and did not provide protections against so-called "sham recyclers," especially since they seemed to be located disproportionately near low-income and minority communities. The Obama EPA announced in May 2009 that it was considering more precisely defining how companies must "contain" recyclable materials and enhancing notification requirements for companies planning to take advantage of the regulatory exemptions the rule provides. The agency in January 2010 also released a draft methodology for analyzing the rule's impacts on low income and minority communities...Read More »



Winters Brothers Buys Automated Waste in Connecticut

Danbury, CT-based Automated Waste Disposal (AWD) and its affiliated businesses, once owned by trash kingpin James Galante, now serving time, has been sold by the US Marshals Service to Winters Brothers CT, LLC. They are the same Winters Brothers (Joseph and Sean) that sold their Long Island-based waste business to IESI, now IESI-BFC back in Sep. 2007. The fate of AWD had been in question since 2006 when the US Marshals Service seized the businesses after Galante's arrest on racketeering charges in connection with the now infamous "property rights" scheme that involved using mob muscle to enforce collusion among local haulers (carters) in Connecticut and eastern New York. Galante, who pleaded guilty in June 2008 and agreed to forfeit his businesses, then valued at $100 million, is now serving an 87-month sentence. In total, more than 33 people were indicted in connection with the scheme.

Winters is buying most of the 25 businesses originally connected with Galante, including the recycling division called Recycling Technologies Inc., and all of the collection routes. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. "We are extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Mayor Boughton's office and the U.S. Marshals Service to make this purchase possible," said Joseph Winters, who with his brother Sean, purchased the company and will serve as CEO and Senior Vice President respectively...Read More »



Summer Street Capital Buys Apple Valley Waste

Private equity firm Summer Street Capital Partners LLC (Buffalo, NY) has a acquired Apple Valley Waste, a provider of waste collection and recycling services to residential and commercial customers in parts of West Virginia and Maryland. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Summer Street recruited John Decker, who previously served as president of operations for Casella Waste Systems, as managing partner. "The addition of John Decker adds tremendous industry knowledge and experience to the management team," said Michael Petri, principal of Summer Street, in a statement. "We look forward to working with John, general manager James Phillips and the rest of the team at Apple Valley to continue to build on the excellent services they provide."

The Apple Valley acquisition is Summer Street's third purchase of an environmental services firm. In August 2010, Summer Street in partnership with Ironwood Capital (Avon, CT) invested in Action Environmental Services' purchase of New York City assets of Republic Services. In November 2006, Summer Street and Ironwood sold their investment interest in Interstate Waste Services to AIG Highstar Capital, a private equity fund sponsored by AIG Global Investment Group...Read More »



Inspector General Says EPA Ignored Possible Health Risks of Recycling Coal Waste

A recently released report from the EPA's inspector general says the agency promoted using coal waste in roads, buildings and other construction over the past 10 years without properly testing the environmental risks. From 2001 to 2010, EPA promoted coal combustion residues (CCRs), the byproducts of coal-fired power plants, such as fly ash, bottom ash and boiler slag, as potentially useful materials for wallboard, road bases, golf course fill, concrete and other applications, in an effort to reduce waste. However, CCRs contain low concentrations of arsenic, lead and mercury, which are known to leach into ground water sources if unprotected, the report said. Promoting their use had come from a government-industry coalition, the Coal Combustion Products Partnership, which included the American Coal Ash Association and Utility Solid Waste Activities Group, as well as other federal agencies. Consequently, the use of CCRs as a structural filler nearly tripled between 2001 and 2008, from 4 million tons to 12 million tons a year, according to the report.

EPA is considering imposing stricter regulations for coal ash following a 2008 environmental disaster at a Tennessee power plant that released more than 5 million cubic yards of ash into a river and nearby lands...Read More »



IESI-BFC Completes $245 Million Secondary Offering

IESI-BFC Ltd. (Toronto, ON) completed an offering of 10.9 million shares of stock owned by TC Carting III, LLC, an affiliate of Thayer I Hidden Creek Partners, L.L.C at a price of C$23.50 per share, making the deal worth C$256 million (US$245 million). The Company did not receive any proceeds from the sale as all of the shares were sold by TC Carting which previously owned preferred stock but converted it into common shares on December 31. A million of the shares offered were purchased by IESI-BFC and then cancelled as a means to return cash to shareholders without committing to a higher dividend. BofA Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan, and Raymond James acted as joint book-running managers for the offering...Read More »



Fairfax County VA Abandons Plan to Buy Burn Plant from Covanta

The Fairfax County, VA Board of Supervisors has decided not to buy Covanta Energy's I-95 Waste-to-Energy plant, and instead will pursue a 30-year contract extension. The county said it has 60 days to finalize its new contract with Covanta which has owned and operated the plant, also known as the Lorton Incinerator, since 1990. The current contract gave the county an option to buy the facility outright which it may have pursued only to extract better terms. "Only after conducting due diligence did we receive the good terms that are before us today," said Board Chairwoman Sharon Bulova. "The extension will result in $300 million in savings over the life of the new contract compared to the terms negotiated in 2008."...Read More »



Industrial Services of America Revenues Up on Metals Recovery

Industrial Services of America, Inc. (Louisville, KY) reported substantially higher revenues and profits for its fourth quarter helped by a recent expansion of its metals recovery operations. Net income for the quarter rose to $2 million, or $0.29 per share, from $1.5 million, or $0.24 per share in the fourth quarter of 2009. Revenue for the quarter jumped to $99.5 million from $37.7 million in the same period of 2009. CEO and chairman of the board Harry Kletter said 2010 was "another great year" in a press release detailing the company's government financial filings. "Our sales have grown at a compound annual rate of 85% per year for each of the last two years, increasing from $100 million in 2008 to $181 million in 2009 to $343 million in 2010. This has occurred during one of the most difficult economic times since the 1930s. We ended 2010 with a strong balance sheet, including a current ratio of 3.6-to-1 and low leverage. In 2011, we will focus on increasing our profit margins."...Read More »



Covanta Completes Sale of Quezon Philippines Project

Covanta said it completed the $125 million sale of its interests in the Quezon coal-fired electric generation facility located in the Philippines to Electricity Generating PCL ("EGCO") which paid in cash. Quezon is the second facility to be sold following Covanta's June 2010 announcement of its intention to sell its equity interests in four fossil fuel facilities in the Philippines, India and Bangladesh. The sale of its interest in the Samalpatti facility in India closed earlier this year...Read More »


Sign up to receive our free Weekly News Bulletin