Waste Managers Find Opportunity in Environmental Cleanup

Waste Managers Find Opportunity in Environmental Cleanup

On December 22, 2008, a wave of coal ash – unleashed by an impoundment rupture – surged across the landscape surrounding the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston Fossil plant. The gray sludge buried homes and inundated waterways in its path, and was as much as six feet deep in some places.

It happened again on February 2, 2014, when an estimated 39,000 tons of coal ash spilled from Duke Energy’s Dan River Steam Station in Eden, North Carolina.

After a series of massive leaks, the EPA established rules for disposal of coal combustion residuals (ie, coal ash) – byproducts of coal combustion at electrical power plants – as a solid waste. This substance represents one of the most predominant types of industrial waste in the US. According to the American Coal Ash Association, approximately 115 million tons were generated in 2013. These rules have spurred ongoing demand for off-site disposal, providing opportunity for solid waste managers to generate revenues via collection and landfill services.

The waste management industry also stands to benefit from an uptick in mining activity, which is expected to spur demand for waste removal and wastewater treatment at mining sites. In 2013, for example, Veolia North America and Consol Energy (a coal and natural gas producer) jointly opened a facility in Mannington, West Virginia designed to treat up to 3,500 gallons of mine water per minute. The ongoing closure of coal mines will also spur demand for remediation services.

To learn more about these trends, read Waste Management: United States, a report recently published by the Freedonia Focus Reports division of The Freedonia Group. The report provides historical data on US waste management service revenues by establishment and market, along with forecasts in dollars to 2020. In addition, the report discusses revenue drivers and constraints and provides profiles of leading companies competing in the US industry.

While you’re there, check out related reports such as Municipal Solid Waste: United States and Recovered Packaging: United States.

About the Author

Erica Keenan is a Market Research Analyst with Freedonia Focus Reports. She holds degrees and certificates in biomedical science and data science, and her experience as an analyst spans multiple industries.