Earth Tech wins contracts in Mexico, Ireland and USA

Tyco unit Earth Tech pulled in several contracts worth nearly $80 millionon three continents recently.

Tyco unit Earth Tech pulled in several contracts worth nearly $80 millionon three continents recently. In Mexico, Earth Tech and joint venture partner Servicios de Agua Trident, a subsidiary of Mitrsui & Co. (USA) Inc., won a $32.8 million DBO/finance contract for a wastewater treatment plant (WWTP) by the Querétaro State Water Commission. The 17.1 MGD San Pedro Martir WWTP includes a sanitation collection system leading to it to be operated by the city.

Earth Tech will operate and maintain the WWTP, including biosolids disposal, for 18 years. About 2.28 MGD of the wastewater will be treated for reuse in industrial and agricultural processes, and green space irrigation.

Two contracts worth nearly €40 million involve upgrades to water and wastewater treatment plants in Ireland. The Dublin City Council signed a €16.5 million DB contract with Earth Tech Ireland to refurbish Ireland’s largest drinking water facility, the Ballymore Eustace Water Treatment Plant (WTP) in Kildare, involving new filtration, sedimentation, chemical and sludge facilities to increase its capacity from 70 to 88 MGD. The second contract is a €21.3 million DBO project from the Laois County Council where Earth Tech, with its partner Bowen Construction, will upgrade the Portlaoise Main Drainage Scheme, including a collection system and WWTP - specifically new inlet pumping, aeration, sedimentation, tertiary filtration and sludge dewatering and drying units.

Earth Tech also won a $5.5 million DB contract by the Hilton Head Public Service District, a drinking water and reclaimed water utility for the north- and mid-island areas of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, USA, for development of a new desalination facility to increase access to affordable freshwater in the community.

WRI establishes first business case for community consent

Corporations seeking local community consent for their operations have a competitive advantage over those that fail to do so, says a report by the World Resources Institute endorsed byan international coalition of faith-based institutional investors in New York.

“Development Without Conflict: The Business Case for Community Consent” is the first report to document precise financial and operational opportunities and risks a company faces when engaging with communities affected by environmentally sensitive development projects. It provides a roadmap for integrating community consent procedures into project and investment strategies.

The report’s four case studies of industrial projects in the Philippines, Argentina, Thailand and Peru demonstrate financial opportunities of achieving community consent including project cost savings, increased access to international capital and positive reputational benefits. Companies that fail to do this face a range of financial implications including cost-overrun risks, litigation, increased scrutiny from Wall Street stock analysts, and significant reputational harm.

The report was endorsed by the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), a coalition of 275 faith-based institutional investors, which include denominations, religious communities, pension funds, healthcare corporations, foundations and dioceses with combined portfolios worth an estimated $110 billion.

The core of free, prior, informed consent (FPIC) is indigenous communities have the right to determine how projects that may affect their land or way of life are developed. This was expanded by some companies and financial institutions to all communities impacted by their projects and investments.

Oscar-winning actress helps launch Blue Planet Run in New York

With American actress Hillary Swank, as special guest, an around-the-world relay run kicked off from the United Nations headquarters in New York City on June 1, marking the start of an athletic event that spotlights the human crises caused by lack of safe drinking water and helps people everywhere become part of the solution.

The 2007 Blue Planet Run, sponsored by Dow Chemical Company, involves 20 male and female athletes who will circumnavigate the earth’s Northern Hemisphere, 15,200 miles across 16 countries and four continents, 24 hours a day for 95 days. Events in cities and towns along the route will mark the Run’s arrival, educate local residents about the water crisis and inspire action - including donations to fund water quality improvement, supply and sanitation projects. Each runner sprints 10 miles a day. Batons are passed at over 1,500 exchange points. The run concludes in New York on Sept. 4.

In 2006, the event funded over $1 million in water projects. The Blue Planet Run Foundation (http://blueplanetrun.org) has financed these efforts in Sierra Leone, Nicaragua, India, Malawi, Bolivia and Mali.

Organizers are hoping to raise even more to fund crucial projects in more areas around the globe. Among the organization’s key programs, the Peer Water Exchange (PWX) is a web-based program developed, in partnership with e-services consultancy Sapient, to utilize and leverage expertise and experience of those implementing water projects. Partners assist Rajesh Shah, who oversees Blue Planet Run Foundation water projects in reviewing funding applications. As of mid-April, $500,000 had been awarded this year.


Field Notes

USA: Data collection specialist Datamatic Ltd. signed contracts with three international distributors - CIAC (Paris), Electromed (Istanbul, Turkey) and Junna Industrial Corp. (Manila, The Philippines) - that will allow the Plano, Texas, company to meet rising demand for automated meter reading (AMR) products worldwide. CIAC joins as a value-added reseller. Electromed is an established international manufacturer of water, gas and electric meters. And Junna has strong distribution channels with water and electric utilities.

USA: Hydranautics won eight new U.S. municipal installation contracts. With a combined capacity of 18.5 MGD, these eight installations - in Taunton River, Massachusetts; Hutchinson, Kansas; Hardinsburg, Kentucky; Flagler Beach, Ormond Beach, Dunes Development-Palm Bay and Palm Bay, Florida; and Poweshiek, Iowa - demonstrate Hydranautics’ broad scope of solutions to varied municipal feedwater challenges.

Canada: H2O Innovation (2000) Inc. announced execution of the most important contract concluded through its U.S. subsidiary, Membrane Systems Inc. (MSI), for supply of a CDN$3.14 million drinking water production plant to in Cape Coral, Florida, USA. Faced with a rapid growth of its population, the city gave a work authorization to MWH Constructors for design and construction of the facilities, and Poole & Kent Co. of Miami was subcontracted for construction of the reverse osmosis (RO) treatment system including a building to house it. MSI was picked to design and furnish the 10 MGD RO system to Poole & Kent.

USA: Tampa Bay Water tapped Veolia Water North America - South LLC to manage a DBO project to nearly double capacity at the its Regional Surface Water Treatment Plant from 72 to 120 MGD. Veolia Water designed, built and now operates what will be the regional water authority’s largest treatment facility and among the world’s most technologically sophisticated, having led a team of companies first selected in 2000. The $158.4 million contract amendment makes the Brandon, Fla., treatment facility the nation’s largest DBO project, sharing the honor with Seattle Public Utilities’ 120-MGD Tolt Treatment Facility.

USA: On June 19, Long Beach, California-based Earth Tech opened the newly modernized Jie Yuan WTP in Tianjin, China, built with international input from Earth Tech’s UK and USA offices, joint venture partner Tianjin Water Works Co. and the Tianjin Water/Wastewater Design Institute.

USA: Reliant Energy selectected a consortium of Siemens Water Technologies and JNE Consulting to provide a system to treat wastewater from a flue gas desulfurization (FGD) scrubber being built at Reliant Energy’s Cheswick Power Station in Springdale, Pennsylvania.

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