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Heritage Receives 2020 EBJ Business Achievement Awards

 

 

San Diego, Calif. (February 26, 2021)Environmental Business Journal® (EBJ), a business research publication which has provided strategic business intelligence to the environmental industry since 1988, has honored Heritage Environmental Services (Heritage) with 2020 EBJ Business Achievement Awards for COVID Response Services, Battery Recycling (New Practice Area), and a 50-Year Recognition.

“2020 was certainly an exceptional year for our society, the economy and the environmental industry,” said Grant Ferrier, president of Environmental Business International Inc. (EBI, Inc.), and editor of Environmental Business Journal. “Unique enough that we added two major categories to the EBJ Awards: COVID Resilience that recognizes companies that adapted to work-at-home, travel, field services and other restrictions, as well as rapidly changing client needs; and COVID Response that recognizes companies that developed or accelerated new business initiatives, innovations and entire business units to support the environment, health & safety needs of their diverse client sectors.”

Throughout the pandemic, Heritage has actively provided response services to help curb the spread of COVID-19. Services include both routine and emergency disinfection in addition to regular hazardous, industrial and medical waste transportation and disposal. Heritage developed a program to ensure safe, secure transportation and disposal of PPE, diverting this wastestream from landfills to an energy recovery facility to be thermally destroyed.

“I’m proud of how our team continued to service customers with their everyday waste needs while stepping up to perform thousands of COVID disinfecting jobs, helping them keep their companies, employees, and clients safe,” said Rudy Streng, Senior Vice President at Heritage. “We also collected N95 masks from hundreds of hospitals across the country, took them to disinfection facilities, and safely returned them to those front line workers.”

Heritage was recognized by EBJ with a 50-Year Recognition award, honoring environmental industry firms founded in 1970. Partnering with innovative organizations and launching a new division, Heritage Battery Recycling, is one of many steps the company is taking to ensure the business sustains its track record of success for another 50 years. Heritage has positioned itself to be on the cutting edge of electronic vehicle battery reuse and recycling, receiving an EBJ award for this New Practice Area.

About Heritage Environmental Services, Inc.

Heritage Environmental Services is a privately held, family-owned environmental services business with more than 1,600 employees across North and Central America. The company provides a full suite of tailored solutions from emergency response, waste disposal, and sustainability services to on-site support and technical solutions to thousands of customers in hundreds of industries and verticals. Throughout its 50-year history, Heritage Environmental Services has prioritized the safety of its employees while pursuing its purpose of protecting human health and the environment.

Heritage Sustainability Investments, LLC Purchases Stake in ClimeCo

 

 

February 10, 2021 (Boyertown, PA) – ClimeCo LLC (ClimeCo) is pleased to announce that Heritage Sustainability Investments, LLC, a subsidiary of The Heritage Group (collectively, Heritage), has purchased a minority stake in ClimeCo. This alliance allows ClimeCo to expand its staffing and project investments to assist companies focused on implementing solutions that meet their sustainability goals. With its comprehensive resources, ClimeCo is firmly positioned to handle market challenges, including rapid changes to climate policy, the formation of new carbon markets and exchanges around the world, and increasing pressure for organizations to improve ESG disclosure transparency.

“The synergies are endless,” said Bill Flederbach, President & CEO of ClimeCo. “It is clear that our two firms can create incremental value together.  I am proud to have Heritage as an investor in ClimeCo! This alliance allows us to enter 2021 with a great partner, a strong balance sheet, and fresh investment capital as we continue to lead in sustainability and the low carbon economy.”

ClimeCo’s relationship with Heritage began in 2015 as part of a California Compliance Offset project to destroy refrigerants and generate carbon offsets that qualify under the California Assembly Bill 32 cap-and-trade program.  Over the years, this working partnership between ClimeCo and Heritage has evolved into an alliance focused on new greenhouse gas opportunities (GHG) and sustainability markets.

“We have been engaged with the ClimeCo team for years, and when an opportunity was presented to support further growth, we were excited to invest in Bill and his team,” said Chad Peterson, President of Heritage Sustainability Investments. “We believe this investment will not only help grow Climeco but also provide a unique opportunity to service Heritage customers who are focused on improving their overall carbon-related goals.”

Heritage’s investment in ClimeCo supports its commitment to be a leader in environmental sustainability, a core tenant to Heritage’s environmental service offering.  Heritage recognizes that combining its leadership in holistic waste management and beneficial reuse with ClimeCo’s expertise in climate change policy, sustainability program development, and emission reduction project implementation provides a unique, turnkey service offering to the market.

About ClimeCo

ClimeCo is a respected advisor, transaction facilitator, and trader of environmental commodity market products. We specialize in regulated carbon, voluntary markets, sustainability, and project development and financing of GHG abatement and mitigation systems. For more information or to discuss how ClimeCo can drive your organization’s value, contact us at 484.415.0501, info@climeco.com, or through our website, climeco.com.

About The Heritage Group

Founded in 1930, The Heritage Group (THG) is a fourth-generation family-owned business managing a diverse portfolio of companies specializing in heavy construction and materials, environmental services, and specialty chemicals. With more than 5,000 employees and 30 operating companies worldwide, THG aims to create a safer, more enriching and sustainable world by harnessing the power of family.

Heritage Invests in Future of Battery Recycling

  • The Heritage Group’s newly formed Heritage Battery Recycling announces collaboration with Romeo Power, Inc. and Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc. – leveraging a well-established logistics network for spent lithium-ion battery collection, processing and reuse assessment
  • Shane Thompson joins the Heritage team as President of Heritage Battery Recycling

 

INDIANAPOLIS, IN. (Feb 10, 2021) – The Heritage Group and Heritage Environmental Services, Inc. (collectively, “Heritage”), a leader in environmental and sustainability services, launched a new division, Heritage Battery Recycling (HBR), in late 2020 to address growing market demand for safe, sustainable solutions for lithium-ion batteries near or at end-of-life. HBR’s goal is to recover and reuse critical battery precursor resources that exist in finite supply across the globe.

In collaboration with Romeo Power, Inc. (“Romeo Power”) (NYSE: RMO), an energy technology leader delivering large-scale electrification solutions for complex commercial applications, HBR will develop a battery reuse and recycling facility sited in the southwestern United States.

“By working directly with Romeo Power, we have a unique opportunity to provide a safe, environmentally sound end-of-life strategy for commercial truck manufacturers, commercial fleet managers and conscientious business owners who are investing in clean energy today,” said Jeff Laborsky, CEO of Heritage. “We are proud to be part of this long-term sustainability collaboration.”

“Romeo Power is thrilled to expand our end-to-end electrification strategy through the Heritage Battery Recycling facility” said Lionel Selwood Jr., CEO of Romeo Power. “We are committed to anticipating our customers’ long-term needs as they transition to electrification, and HBR will provide them with a turnkey solution to repurpose end-of-life batteries safely and responsibly.”

To jumpstart efficiencies in transportation and logistics for HBR’s battery collection operations across North America, Heritage partnered with Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc. (“Crystal Clean”) (Nasdaq: HCCI), a leading provider of parts cleaning, used oil re-refining, and hazardous and non-hazardous waste services primarily focused on small and mid-sized customers. Crystal Clean’s extensive network of 89 branch locations, advanced logistic operations and long-standing customer relationships across the automotive sector position it as an optimal partner for HBR.

Together, Heritage and Crystal Clean bring HBR access to over 100,000 customer locations, 2,500 knowledgeable employees, a fleet of over 1,300 power units and 108 facility locations across North America.

“The creation of Heritage Battery Recycling, and our partnership with Crystal Clean, reflects our 50-year legacy of pursuing sustainable solutions for our customers, and further demonstrates our commitment to achieving our Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) goals,” said Jeff Laborsky, CEO of Heritage.  “Our two companies together combine the strengths of Crystal Clean’s advanced collection capabilities with Heritage’s safe processing expertise.”

”Since its inception, Heritage-Crystal Clean has partnered with Heritage in an effort to provide value to our customers,” explained Brian Recatto, President and CEO of Heritage-Crystal Clean. “We’re excited about our commitment to invest in a new partnership with Heritage Battery Recycling because it not only furthers our valuable relationship with Heritage, but is demonstrative of our vision to protect the earth’s resources and our mission to provide environmentally sustainable solutions to our customers.

HBR is investing in technology, partnerships and people to help identify the highest and best use of reduced capacity electric vehicle batteries and establishing best practices for recycling or refurbishment. Heritage’s experience with safely handling hazardous waste and managing total byproduct programs with many auto OEMs, makes it a natural fit for collaboration with automotive manufacturers facing this industry-wide challenge.

Heritage announced today that Shane Thompson has been named President of newly formed HBR. “Shane is the right leader for Heritage Battery Recycling,” said Laborsky. “His extensive background in battery end-of-life management makes him one of the world’s leading experts in this rapidly evolving industry. We are confident that Shane’s strong business relationships and deep understanding of the battery value chain will quickly position Heritage Battery Recycling as a market leader in North America.”

“I was thrilled to be asked to join the team and launch Heritage Battery Recycling,” said Shane Thompson. “We’ve reached an inflection point in the electrification of vehicles across North America – and as those spent battery units move to recycling or reuse opportunities, Heritage Battery Recycling will be ready to meet the demand.”

About Heritage Environmental Services, Inc.

Heritage Environmental Services is a privately held, family-owned environmental services business with more than 1,600 employees across North and Central America. The company provides a full suite of tailored solutions from emergency response, waste disposal, and sustainability services to on-site support and technical solutions to thousands of customers in hundreds of industries and verticals. Throughout its 50-year history, Heritage Environmental Services has prioritized the safety of its employees while pursuing its purpose of protecting human health and the environment.

About Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc.

Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc. provides parts cleaning, used oil re-refining, and hazardous and non-hazardous waste services primarily to small and mid-sized customers in the vehicle maintenance sector as well as manufacturers and other industrial businesses. Our service programs include parts cleaning, containerized waste management, used oil collection and re-refining, vacuum truck services, waste antifreeze collection, recycling and product sales, and field services. These services help our customers manage their used chemicals and liquid and solid wastes, while also helping to minimize their regulatory burdens. Our customers include businesses involved in vehicle maintenance operations, such as car dealerships, automotive repair shops, and trucking firms, as well as small-to-medium sized manufacturers, such as metal product fabricators and printers, and other industrial businesses. Through our used oil re-refining program, we recycle used oil into high quality lubricating base oil, and we are a supplier to firms that produce and market finished lubricants. Through our antifreeze program we recycle spent antifreeze and produce a full line of virgin-quality antifreeze products. Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc. is headquartered in Elgin, Illinois, and operates through 89 branches serving approximately 91,000 customer locations.

About Romeo Power, Inc.

Founded in 2016 and headquartered in Los Angeles, California, Romeo Power (NYSE: RMO) is an energy technology leader delivering large-scale electrification solutions for complex commercial applications. The company’s suite of advanced hardware, combined with its innovative battery management system, delivers the safety, performance, reliability and configurability its customers need to succeed. Romeo Power’s 113,000 square-foot manufacturing facility brings its flexible design and development process inhouse to pack the most energy dense modules on the market. To keep up with everything Romeo Power, please follow the company on social @romeopowerinc or visit www.romeopower.com.

 

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Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc. Safe Harbor Statement

This release contains forward-looking statements that are based upon current management expectations. Generally, the words “aim,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “should,” “will be,” “will continue,” “will likely result,” “would” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause our actual results, performance or achievements or industry results to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and other important factors include, among others: developments in the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting impact on our business and operations, future financial and operating results, future disclosures of historical financial and operating results, general economic conditions and downturns in the business cycles of automotive repair shops, industrial manufacturing businesses and small businesses in general; increased solvent, fuel and energy costs and volatility in the price of crude oil, the selling price of lubricating base oil, solvent, fuel, energy, and commodity costs; our ability to successfully integrate businesses we acquire; our ability to enforce our rights under the FCC Environmental purchase agreement; our ability to pay our debt when due and comply with our debt covenants; our ability to successfully operate our used oil re-refinery and to cost effectively collect or purchase used oil or generate operating results; increased market supply or decreased demand for base oil; further consolidation and/or declines in the United States automotive repair and manufacturing industries; the impact of extensive environmental, health and safety and employment laws and regulations on our business; legislative or regulatory requirements or changes adversely affecting our business; competition in the industrial and hazardous waste services industries and from other used oil processing facilities including other re-refineries; claims and involuntary shutdowns relating to our handling of hazardous substances; the value of our used solvents and oil inventory, which may fluctuate significantly; our dependency on key employees; our level of indebtedness, which could affect our ability to fulfill our obligations, impede the implementation of our strategy, and expose us to interest rate risk; our ability to effectively manage our extended network of branch locations; the control of The Heritage Group over the Company; and the risks identified in our Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC on March 3, 2020 and subsequent filings with the SEC. Given these uncertainties, you are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We assume no obligation to update or revise them or provide reasons why actual results may differ. The information in this release should be read in light of such risks and in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements and the notes thereto included elsewhere in this release.

Heritage Marks 10 Years as a SmartWay® Transport Partner

Today marks 10 years that Heritage has been a part of the SmartWay® Transport Partnership, an innovative collaboration between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the transportation industry. Since we joined the partnership in 2010, we’ve won two Excellence awards, which go to the top two percent of SmartWay Partners who have made significant contributions to reducing the impact of transportation on air quality.

Heritage serves customers all over North America, and participating in the SmartWay program for the past decade has played a major role in reducing our total carbon footprint.

Participation in the program means making smart decisions on equipment, routing, and driver behavior.  The process of data tracking creates a framework for measuring and encouraging year-over-year improvements. To be eligible to display EPA SmartWay decals, a tractor or trailer must each comply with strict program guidelines:

List of improvements made under the smartway program

 

By moving away from 2014 and 2015 model year tractors, Heritage saw an average of $6,730 in fuel cost savings per tractor. We also went to the Thermo King Envidia APU (auxiliary power unit). This APU allows our drivers to enjoy comforts of home while out on the road without having to keep our tractors idling during breaks. Along with investing in fuel saving technology, we’ve also focused on safety. We’ve added cameras, adaptive cruise control, and lane departure warning systems on the tractors to keep our drivers and all people on the roads safer.

Having an extensive transportation network enables us to safely treat and dispose of waste in the best way possible, regardless of where it is generated. But we recognize that transportation has an impact on the environment too, and by participating in EPA’s SmartWay program, we’re reducing our carbon footprint and making our transportation activities more sustainable.

For information about the SmartWay Transport Partnership visit www.epa.gov/smartway.

Heritage SmartWay Transoprt Partner 10 year certificate

Learn more about our Transportation and Hazardous Waste Services 

Earth Day Pollinator Project in Benton, AR

Prior to the COVID-19 Pandemic, our Benton, Arkansas facility started making plans for Earth Day and for continued employee engagement throughout the summer.  One part of the plan was to start an employee garden to grow fresh herbs and vegetables.  For the garden to be productive, the team considered bringing in a couple of beehives and planting wildflowers.

While we must postpone the employee garden until next year, our maintenance personnel (following facility social distancing guidelines) moved forward with as much of the project as possible.  Before Earth Day, they were able to sow 2 acres of wildflowers.  Additionally, they planted 50 live oak and 50 poplar seedlings!  And now this week the bees have arrived.  Two of our employees will serve as on-site beekeepers.  We will check back in later this summer to check on our wildflower fields and look at all pollinators, including the bees, butterflies and birds.

 

 

Sustainable Business Practices – Part 3

In closing our series on sustainable business practices, I felt it wouldn’t be conclusive without a look into the triple bottom line. You can refer to these three ket points as Socially Responsiblity, Environmental Soundness, and Economic Viability or simply: People, Planet, and Profit. These three pillars of business effort are the core of what makes a business sustainable.

Impacts to people are huge for businesses. It starts with its employees at number one, then the people who live near its operations, the people who purchase their goods or services, the people who sell them goods and services, the people who come into contact with any byproducts from their goods or services, the people who are impacted by any changes their operations cause to the environment, etc.

Protecting our planet may be regulated by local municipalities, states and the U.S. EPA – but policing actions are not the same as preventing damage. Consider the environmental hierarchy: reduce, reduce, and recycle. Recycling has the lowest benefit. Reducing wastes and impacts – by not creating them at all – has the most far reaching effect.

Profit is not a four letter word. Profit is a very good thing for the growth of our economy and the improvement of job markets. And it is a proven fact that doing the right thing for our environment can also be lucrative for business. For example, reducing energy usage reduces costs which can drop straight to the bottom line. Innovations in existing products and the development of new products and services to enter the marketplace with an added green benefit or selling point also contribute to increased profitability.

At Heritage, we added a fourth pillar in our sustainable efforts – patrons. Our Patrons are the consumers, people and businesses who engage with our services. Going full circle to assure we consider the ripple effect of all our actions, we believe it is “material” for our business to focus on impacts to our patrons.

If you do your sustainability homework on many other large businesses, you will see that many adjust their focus points as well to complement their business. But no matter what you call them, principles of the triple bottom line are covered.

The upcoming 2013 GRI Global Conference on Sustainability and Reporting has the theme of “Information – Integration – Innovation.” Will this be the set of buzz words for sustainability in the years to come? Freely given information is certainly easier to understand than making sense of company transparency. To me, Integration in this context means making sustainability a part of every aspect of your business – management, employee, and consumer engagement. And again Innovation: seeking new ideas and redesigned old ideas that will change our impacts on the world.

If I’m right about this new wave of understanding, remember you read it here first. 

Sustainable Business Practices – Part 2

In today’s technology biased world, people readily search the internet from home, from work, or on the go from their cell phone for answers to all of life’s questions. But do you question the backstory of the answers you find before making a buying decision? 

It feels great to make the healthy decision to pick fresh fruit for a snack. But do you know if the fruit you select is grown and transported locally, from another state, or another country?

Do you select bottled water simply on cost; or do you pay any attention to where it was bottled, how much packaging surrounds the bottles or if the bottle itself has been light weighted to use less plastic? 

Considering there are no mandated sustainability labels for products and services today, what should you question and what should you look for when you do your sustainable homework to check out a business? If you are checking out the sustainability practices of a business from their corporate web-site, look for these major components:

      • Transparency
      • Materiality
      • Reporting
      • Innovation

Transparency: Businesses that wish to be sustainable make a serious commitment to choices that impact more factors than just profit. They commit to noble actions to protect future generations. Companies that want to prove their sustainability commit to being “transparent” in their business actions. This doesn’t mean that private companies have to disclose detailed financials or that any business would openly share trade secrets or intellectual property. It does mean they will publically share their goals and actions (positive and negative) that relate to their impact on our earth.

Materiality: When a business decides it is time to publically talk about their sustainability efforts, they have many decisions to make. But all of those decisions should come back to “material” (physical, relevant) business impacts. For example, a business that manufactures a car is responsible for the complete life cycle of their product from raw material to end of life destruction. All of the impacts to employees and land from the physical manufacture of each part and the assembly of the car, to the impacts of emissions from fossil fuels needed to operate the vehicle and safety of passengers are included in that life cycle and should be addressed by the business in their sustainability efforts.

Reporting:  There are no laws that require businesses to report their sustainability efforts. And there are hundreds of voluntary programs a business can choose – or completely do their own thing (even it that is nothing). The most popular are the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). The impetus to start reporting is to satisfy the consumers who may spend their money on your product or service and the financial investment community (including stockholders) that may well help a business to expand and grow. Reporting needs to be timely, include a baseline for comparing current activities, include improvement goals and share the positive and negative aspects of their most recent efforts.

Innovation: Some consumers wait for new technologies to become mainstream and comparably priced to its predecessor before buying something new. But, aren’t we all impressed with those technology companies that are always on the cutting edge? Who are the companies that are on the cutting edge with new green products or improved products? Have you paid any attention to the changes in laundry detergent – that could be a blog of its own! How do you pick the right light bulb, dishwasher, or thermostat? As with buying a hybrid or electric car, you need to compare way more than the sticker price in your decision process.

Sustainable Business Practices – Part 1

When you hear the word “sustainability” what do you think? Most people think “green” or “protecting our earth.” On a personal level though, it comes down how these thoughts are turned into the actions we take at home, at play, and at work. Do you shut off the lights when you leave a room? Do you pay attention to lawn watering bans in the summertime? Are you both recycling and looking for ways to reduce?

You also react to the obstacles business puts in front of you – layers of packaging for food products (a bag inside a box), understanding the chemical composition of products (VOCs in paint), and trying to guess if the latest marketing tactic is real or green washing. How you react to these obstacles is how you embrace your sustainable power!

It is the consumer who decides if a product or service is successful – simply by choosing to buy or walk on by… Do you consider the full impact in your buying decisions? For example, did you know that the transportation and distribution of some products can represent a larger carbon footprint than the manufacture and end of life disposition? That slogan “think global, buy local” has real merit. Yet, some people will still pay more money for specialty water from a tropical island – a product that is transported thousands of miles by boat, truck, and car before it makes it to your refrigerator. Have you considered these high carbon emitting steps it must go through before you can have a cool refreshing drink to carry with you? Will you still choose that option or will you purchase a filter for your tap and some reusable containers? Much of sustainability truly is your decision.

The power is truly yours; you decide what to buy and perhaps where to invest. The public awakening to sustainable business practices is beginning to level the playing field. Just as products become obsolete and new businesses grow rapidly due to new technology development, similar business decline and growth opportunities are happening as consumers use their sustainable buying power. The businesses that are engaging in sustainable practices are moving up while those that don’t remain stagnant or fall behind. Think about it; what products do you choose? What companies do you support or avoid?

People in this newly emerging sustainability field are working to standardize the calculation and publication of product LCAs (life cycle analysis) and carbon labels, similar to nutrition information you see now, may soon show up on the products you use. But until those are standard practice, what options do you have to educate yourself today? Of course, after “use your common sense,” the next answer is the Internet. Many businesses now report all of their sustainable efforts on-line and in annual reports. Just remember, it is a voluntary practice, so if you can’t find sustainability prominently shared on a business web-site… that tells you something as well.