>>> Why trash hauler Republic Services thinks the U.S. is going green despite the politics: ‘To be environmentally sustainable, it’s got to be economically sustainable’
by Phil Wahba
September 8, 2023
Jon Vander Ark doesn't mind anyone calling the company he leads, Republic Services, a garbage company. After all, founded in 1996, the company made its name hauling trash and still makes 5 million collections a day. But Vander Ark, CEO since 2021 and a 13-year veteran of Republic Services, has been working to modernize its business model to go after the higher-growth, higher-profit recycling market.
"I've seen us go from a garbage company to a waste company to a waste and recycling company to now an environmental services and sustainability company," says Vander Ark.
Last year, Republic managed 8 million tons of recyclable items, and extracted 2.4 million tons of materials that can have a second life. This strategy has boosted its stock in the last two years and given the company a market cap of $45 billion. What's more, under Vander Ark, Republic has gone after the fast-growing environmental services and consulting business, making a number of acquisitions. Vander Ark's moves raised revenue 20% last year to almost $14 billion.
The CEO says the way for Republic to thrive in this hyper-politicized environment around climate change is to simply be pragmatic about the focus on cost savings and revenue potential as Americans recycle more. For instance, Republic now has a fast-growing business recovering plastic consumer packaging for circularity, a term that refers to components being constantly re-used. It takes thrown away plastics and recycles them to produce high-quality plastic used by consumer packaged goods companies. "We think about circularity and de-carbonization as two fundamental mega-trends," says Vander Ark.
This interview was edited and condensed for clarity.
Fortune: How do we in the U.S. become a less wasteful society? And if we manage to do that, is that bad for business?
It would not hurt business. In fact it helps. We're already seeing that in terms of shrinking solid waste on a per capita basis. Typically a market grows with population, but solid waste is shrinking because we're diverting more and recycling is growing faster to make up the difference. Our aspiration is to accelerate that trend. So we look at every ton that goes into a landfill and challenge ourselves and ask, "How could we take that out and create value with it?" I pay for something to go to a landfill. But if I can recycle it, I get value for it on the other end.
When you look at how far along many European countries are in recycling in contrast to how much Americans throw out as trash, it's tempting to see Americans as lazy. Can recycling really become part of our culture?
We're certainly behind the Europeans. They're a very source-separated environment and things are very clearly separated for plastic, aluminum, glass and paper. That's how the U.S. was originally and recycling rates didn't really move for a period of time. When it did take off is when we moved to single stream, which is to put everything in one big container, which made it easier for people to recycle. But that has complications. You have some people who don't care and they're still putting garbage in and contaminating that load. And then you have at the other end, the wishful recycler who wants that greasy pizza box to be recycled so badly, but it can't be.
It seems like a lot of packaging is wasteful and impedes recycling. What can be done?
Take plastic packaging. Not all plastics are recyclable. So take a clamshell that is used for your take-out chicken rotisserie. It was made with post-consumer recycled content (material made from the items that consumers recycle every day such as aluminum, cardboard boxes, paper, and plastic bottles). But that shell itself is not going to be recycled, it's going to the landfill. So part of the opportunity is to design for recyclability upfront.
What do you make of the current pushback against ESG (environmental, social, and governance) standards for publicly traded companies? Could this hurt your business, or does this ESG emphasis march forward?
"ESG" needs to be unpacked. It's like a pig, a chicken and duck that get lumped together. All different, but all worthy topics. The "E" part of this is here to stay. We think about circularity and de-carbonization as two fundamental mega-trends that whatever the political sentiment, companies are investing billions of dollars in. There's a global consensus there and we see those as tailwinds for our business.
Another CEO recently told me that you can get consumers on board with green initiatives more easily if one doesn't mention climate change, and by emphasizing reducing waste and saving money. Do you agree?
We're not running away from climate change. We get that the world is heating up and humans are a factor in that and we don't hide from that. I would say this: if something's going to be environmentally sustainable, it's got to be economically sustainable. So we don't do things as science projects or for charity. It's our business and we're going to make money and grow.
You have a goal that by 2030, half of your new garbage and recycling trucks will be electric vehicles. That's ambitious but what stops you from going even faster?
Just like a passenger car, if you retrofit a diesel truck, you add too much weight with the batteries and so it becomes economically inefficient. But when you design it from scratch, you take enough weight out so it can run a full 10.5-hour day and 125 miles without having to stop, so you don't lose productivity.
Do you ever get offended by someone calling Republic Services a garbage company despite all the push you've made into recycling and environmental services?
We're not offended by that because people get too easily offended. That's what we called ourselves a decade ago and I've seen us go from a garbage company to a waste company to a waste and recycling company to now an environmental services and sustainability company. And as that's evolved, so has our mindset. We still have landfills and they are going to be with us for a long time, so we don't run from that. But we're way bigger and way more than that now.
>>> BWXT-led Team Awarded $45 Billion Environmental Management Contract for DOE’s Hanford Site
April 17, 2023
LYNCHBURG, Va., April 17, 2023--(BUSINESS WIRE)--BWX Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: BWXT) today announced a contract with an estimated value of up to $45 billion over a 10-year ordering period from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for environmental management operations at the Hanford Site in Washington.
The DOE announced that the Hanford Integrated Tank Disposition Contract (ITDC) was awarded to Hanford Tank Waste Operations & Closure, LLC (H2C), which is a joint venture led by a BWXT subsidiary and includes subsidiaries of Amentum and Fluor.
"This is the largest single contract award in our company’s history and is a stair-step achievement as we strengthen our leadership position in environmental restoration at highly technical projects across the nation," said Rex Geveden, BWXT’s president and chief executive officer. "Our company remains highly committed to this critical mission for the U.S. Department of Energy and our emphasis on environmental stewardship and sustainability more broadly going forward."
"Our team is honored to take on the largest and most complex radioactive waste cleanup project in the United States," said Heatherly Dukes, president of BWXT’s Technical Services Group. "We are committed to working with our DOE Environmental Management customer, regulatory authorities and the Tri-Cities community in safely reducing the environmental liabilities at the site in an efficient and effective manner that is protective of the workforce, the public and the environment."
The scope of the ITDC includes operation of Hanford tank farm facilities, eventual operation of the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant, and responsibility for other core functions such as project management, security and emergency services, business performance, and environment, safety, health and quality.
The DOE is engaged in one of the great public works projects of this century at the Hanford Site near Richland, Washington. Responsible for the federal government’s cleanup of the legacy of more than 40 years of producing plutonium through the 1980s, DOE is transforming the site back into an operations mode to treat tank waste from the production era. More information is available from the DOE’s Office of Environmental Management.
>>> Solarcycle Plans To Recycle 1 Million Panels A Year With Help From $30 Million In Financing
Mar 15, 2023
Solar panels don’t last forever, but they don’t have to die, either. A California startup called Solarcycle has developed proprietary technology to turn old panels into materials for new ones.
Company CEO and Cofounder Suvi Sharma says the tech can return more than 95% of valuable materials like aluminum, glass, copper, silver and silicon back to the domestic solar value chain. That can make for a more sustainable and scalable solar industry in the United States that relies less on overseas suppliers.
Solarcycle has just raised $30 million in Series A funding, bringing the company total to $37 million since its birth in January 2022. The round was led by large asset manager Fifth Wall and HG Ventures, the corporate arm of The Heritage Group. Other participants included Prologis Ventures and existing investors Urban Innovation Fund and Closed Loop Partners.
The equity and infrastructure financing will be used to grow the capacity of a Solarcycle recycling plant in Texas from 500,000 to 1 million panels by the end of the year and invest in further research and development.
Sharma explains that solar panels last for maybe 25-30 years, at the most. So panels that were installed decades ago are reaching the end of their lives, and being landfilled or replaced by mining new materials.
He says he spent 18 years in the solar industry and helped establish Solarcycle out of necessity. “I was looking for a recycler that could truly recycle solar panels and couldn’t find any.”
A report by Yale Environment 360 details an expected surge of retired solar panels from the fastest-growing source of energy in the U.S. and says about 90% of old modules end up in landfills after they’ve lost their efficiency due to age or are defective.
Solarcycle is one of only five companies in the United States listed by an industry group as being capable of providing recycling services.
Sharma argues that Solarcycle has the most-advanced and cost-effective solution.
“We are a solar company that does recycling, not a recycling company that does solar.”
But there’s plenty of need for solar panel recycling.
“There are about 500 million solar panels installed in the country,” the CEO says. “There’s more solar panels than there are people.
“There’s going to be 1 billion (solar panels) within the next five years” in part from incentives for domestic manufacturing under the Inflation Reduction Act.
“We need more materials for those and we need to get those materials for the next generation of panels from the old panels that are reaching the end of life.”
The Solar Energy Industries Association said in a recent solar market insight report that “projections for this and next year show a broad market recovery with growth across all sectors averaging 19% per year until 2027.”
Solarcycle can recycle more than 90% of a solar panel from a volume or weight perspective. Sharma says the technology can recycle more than 95% of the materials from an old panel. The company is still finalizing the recycling of plastics.
Solarcycle has a corporate headquarters in Oakland, California. Its recycling facility on 15 acres in Odessa, Texas, takes in panels from residential, commercial and industrial sources, and utility companies.
The process is being fine-tuned in Texas and Solarcycle hopes to expand from a capacity of 500,000 panels per year to 1 million by the end of 2023. That’s a lot, but “we are really at the tip of the iceberg on this thing,” Sharma says.
Research by Rystad Energy of Norway projects that recyclable materials from solar panels will be worth more than $2.7 billion by 2030, up from $170 million this year.
“While the end of life stream of solar panels is relatively small today,” Sharma says, “it’s growing extremely rapidly and will continue to for the next 20 years—almost exponential growth.”
At its Texas facility, Solarcycle is building a system using “second-life” solar panels, or those that still work but were replaced by users who wanted to upgrade. The company plans to install the system this year and Sharma says it can supply all or most of the energy needed to power the recycling facility.
Each old panel there will come in handy later on. “When it does truly reach the end of life, we don’t have to ship it anywhere again. We really just recycle it on-site, with a huge environmental benefit,” he says.
Beyond the latest round of financing, Solarcycle is looking to expand closer to areas where old panels need recycling.
“The Southwest, like California for example, is currently the largest solar state,” the CEO says. “Also, it’s got a lot of the old systems. Right now, we are bringing in panels from all over the country for recycling. As needs grow, we will set up something closer to California, in the Southwest.”
For now, Solarcycle has a domestic focus and international aspirations. Sharma says the bulk of solar product installed in the U.S in the last five to 10 years has come from China or Chinese manufacturers.
“In order to build a strong, domestic industry here for manufacture of solar, it’s critical to get these materials like glass, aluminum, silicon and put them back into the material set for the next generation of panels. That’s one way we can really become more self-reliant in the U.S. on solar manufacturing.”
>>> 11 Best Recycling Stocks To Buy Now
by Hamna Asim
December 21, 2022
In this article, we discuss 11 best recycling stocks to buy now. If you want to see more stocks in this selection, check out 5 Best Recycling Stocks To Buy Now.
The global waste recycling services market was valued at $57.69 billion in 2021 and is expected to be worth $88.01 billion by 2030, indicating a compound annual growth rate of 4.8% during the forecast period of 2022 to 2030. The high volume of global economic activities has heightened the demand for recycling of waste materials.
The recycling sector has become an integral part of the urban infrastructure since it ensures the protection of both the human health and environment. In addition to higher urbanization and the expanding industrial sector, the growing agricultural production leads to more wastage from the agro-industries, thus driving the demand for the waste recycling services across the globe.
There are new entrants looking to resolve the lags in the waste management and recycling industry. For example, solar panels are considered green hardware, but older versions of panels are turning into hazardous waste. Thus, a California-based startup, SolarCycle, is using that waste by recycling parts of the older panels and disposing them off for profit. SolarCycle asserts that it can cheaply extract about 95% of the important materials in solar panels, like silver, silicon, copper, and aluminum. These can then be recycled or repurposed, resulting in an efficient circular solar economy.
Some of the best recycling stocks to invest in include Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN), Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), and Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG).
We selected the following recycling stocks based on positive analyst coverage, strong business fundamentals, and market visibility. We have assessed the hedge fund sentiment from Insider Monkey’s database of 920 elite hedge funds tracked as of the end of the third quarter of 2022. The list is arranged according to the number of hedge fund holders in each firm.
Best Recycling Stocks To Buy Now
11. Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 8
Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG) was founded in 2012 and is headquartered in North Little Rock, Arkansas. It is an environmental services company in the United States, operating through three segments – Assessment, Permitting and Response, Measurement and Analysis, and Remediation and Reuse. It provides its services to the technology, media, chemical, energy, power and utility, industrial and manufacturing, financial, and engineering industries, as well as local, state, provincial, and federal government entities.
On December 12, BofA analyst Andrew Obin upgraded Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG) to Buy from Neutral, citing a forecast for accelerating earnings growth in 2023. Montrose Environmental Group (NYSE:MEG) stock also rose on December 12 after the company announced it had acquired Huco Consulting, a company focused on safety and ESG goals, to expand its range of environmental services.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 8 hedge funds were bullish on Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG) at the end of the third quarter of 2022, compared to 9 funds in the last quarter. Richard Driehaus’ Driehaus Capital is the largest stakeholder of the company, with 342,461 shares worth $11.5 million.
Like Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN), Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), and Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG), Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG) is one of the best recycling stocks to consider buying.
Here is what Baron Funds specifically said about Montrose Environmental Group, Inc. (NYSE:MEG) in its Q2 2022 investor letter:
“Montrose Environmental Group, Inc.(NYSE:MEG), an environmental services company, underperformed during the quarter. Despite reiterating guidance for 2022, Montrose underperformed as the market penalized high-growth companies generally. We continue to remain positive on the company’s prospects and ability to achieve or beat its long-term growth target of over 20% per year. We remain particularly excited about Montrose’s potential to benefit from increased government regulation around PFAS chemical contamination and methane emissions.”
10. Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 9
Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) is a Texas-based company that provides solutions for the reuse, recycling, and disposal of waste streams and recyclables in the United States. It offers disposal and recycling services for motor oil and automotive lubricants, oil filters, scrap tires, goods destruction, food waste, plastics, cardboard, metal, glass, mixed paper, construction debris, and regulated and non-regulated solid, liquid, and gas wastes. Even without gaining new clients, existing customers will likely expand operations and require more waste services, making Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) one of the premier recycling stocks to invest in.
On April 18, EF Hutton analyst Chip Moore initiated coverage of Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) with a Buy rating and a $13 price target. As a leading national provider of waste and recycling solutions, Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) is "differentiated" by its asset-light, national footprint, and ability to handle comprehensive waste streams, the analyst told investors. He noted that the company has also developed "valuable" data warehousing capabilities, offering full waste-stream services for its clients.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 9 hedge funds were long Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) at the end of September 2022, with collective stakes worth $29.5 million, compared to 7 funds in the prior quarter worth $14.7 million. Nelson Obus’ Wynnefield Capital is the leading position holder in the company, with 2.5 million shares worth $21.7 million.
Here is what Long Cast Advisor specifically said about Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) in its Q2 2022 investor letter:
“Quest Resource Holding Corporation (NASDAQ:QRHC) borrowed heavily to purchase Rome RWS, Inc., and with results from the acquired company not yet fully on the income statement, the debt ratios expanded and equity valuations declined. Management – and really the Board – is undertaking a high skill maneuver of integrating its largest acquisition to date, carrying an unprecedented level of debt all concurrent with the long planned retirement of the long tenured CFO. It’s a little more exciting than necessary but the valuation is undemanding and the opportunity set is quite large.
Since I’ve long written about what this company could look like if it leaned more deeply into utilizing technology within its two-sided marketplace, I’ll be closely following the XPO Logistics (XPO) spinoff of the truck brokerage business, expected in 4Q22. Truck and waste brokerage share some similar dynamics and as I’ve long noted, the technologist at XPO worked at Oakleaf concurrently with QRHC CEO Ray Hatch. Technology was a big enabling factor at Oakleaf and in XPO’s +10x growth. I think it would have a similar function for QRHC were management to wisely invest time and resources in its development.”
9. Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. (NYSE:LICY)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 15
Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. (NYSE:LICY) is headquartered in Toronto, Ontario, and the company engages in the lithium-ion battery resource recovery and lithium-ion battery recycling business in North America. On October 13, the company announced that it has initiated commercial operations at its lithium-ion battery recycling facility in Alabama. The facility, which is based in Tuscaloosa, uses patented technology to recycle and directly process full EV battery packs without any dismantling through a submerged shredding process that produces no wastewater. Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. (NYSE:LICY) is one of the premier recycling stocks to invest in.
On December 15, ??Citi analyst P.J. Juvekar maintained a Buy recommendation on Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. (NYSE:LICY) but lowered the firm's price target on the shares to $7.50 from $8. The analyst observed that while there is an inclination to go back to cyclical chemical names after having lagged in 2022, he has decided to "stay defensive" going into 2023.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 15 hedge funds were long Li-Cycle Holdings Corp. (NYSE:LICY) at the end of September 2022, and Zilvinas Mecelis’ Covalis Capital is the leading position holder in the company, with 11.6 million shares worth $61.8 million.
8. Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 19
Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) is an Illinois-based company that provides parts cleaning, hazardous and non-hazardous waste, and used oil collection services to small and mid-sized customers in the industrial and vehicle maintenance sectors in the United States and Canada. The company also provides containerized waste management, wastewater vacuum, antifreeze recycling, and field services. Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) is one of the leading recycling stocks to invest in.
On October 19, Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) reported Q3 non-GAAP earnings per share of $1.01 and a revenue of $172.22 million, outperforming Wall Street estimates by $0.21 and $17.23 million, respectively. The Q3 revenue increased nearly 40% compared to the prior-year quarter.
Needham analyst James Ricchiuti on October 21 maintained a Buy rating on Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) but trimmed the firm's price target on the shares to $40 from $43 as he noted that the company delivered "another impressive quarterly report." Oil business margins are forecasted to shrink in Q4 as a result of downtime in Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI)’s refinery, which may have contributed to the pullback in shares, but it is "unwarranted," the analyst wrote in a research note.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 19 hedge funds were long Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) at the end of September 2022, compared to 16 funds in the last quarter. Chuck Royce’s Royce & Associates is the largest stakeholder of the company, with 1.15 million shares worth $34 million.
Meridian Funds made the following comment about Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) in its Q3 2022 investor letter:
“Heritage-Crystal Clean, Inc (NASDAQ:HCCI) is an environmental services company focused on machine parts cleaning, used oil collection, oil re-refining, and hazardous and non-hazardous waste services. Our rationale for investing in this company includes the recurring revenue stream it generates from its environmental services business unit and substantial growth opportunities in the re-refinery and used oil collection segments. Continued strong execution and higher oil prices contributed to the stock’s solid performance during the period. Notably, Heritage-Crystal Clean’s oil business segment generated record revenue in the second quarter and saw segment margins improve to 41%, as the spread between base oil sales and the cost of collecting used oil widened. The company’s core environmental services segment also recorded record quarterly revenue. We believe the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) story at Heritage remains under appreciated by the market as the company collects used motor oil and recycles it for reuse. We have high conviction in the long-term growth story for the company, but trimmed our position in the stock during the period as the share price appreciated.”
7. PureCycle Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCT)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 23
PureCycle Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCT) was founded in 2015 and is headquartered in Orlando, Florida. The company produces recycled polypropylene (PP) and holds a license for restoring waste PP into ultra-pure recycled resin. Its recycling process separates color, odor, and other contaminants from plastic waste feedstock to turn it into virgin-like resin. PureCycle Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCT) is one of the best recycling stocks to consider. At the end of September 30, the company had total liquidity of $416.1 million, including $215.0 million of cash, cash equivalents, and debt securities available for sale and $201.1 million in restricted cash.
On November 11, Cowen analyst Thomas Boyes maintained an Outperform rating on PureCycle Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCT) but lowered the price target on the shares to $11 from $15. The analyst said as expected, pellet production at Ironton shifted into January and said the facility is still forecasted to fully ramp at the end of 2023.
According to Insider Monkey’s third quarter database, 23 hedge funds were bullish on PureCycle Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:PCT), with collective stakes worth $407.7 million, compared to 23 funds in the prior quarter worth $400.6 million. Daniel Patrick Gibson’s Sylebra Capital Management is the leading stakeholder of the company, with more than 29 million shares worth $235.5 million.
6. Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 23
Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST) operates as a vertically integrated solid waste services company in the United States. The company offers resource management services including solid waste collection and disposal, transfer, recycling, and organics services to residential, commercial, municipal, institutional, and industrial customers. The company lifted its full-year 2022 revenue guidance to between $1.065 billion and $1.080 billion from a prior range of $1.035 billion to $1.050 billion. The consensus revenue came in at $1.04 billion.
On October 24, Jefferies analyst Stephanie Moore initiated coverage of Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST) with a Buy rating and a price target of $95, down from $103. The company offers superior pricing power given its Northeast concentration, as well as the ability to see accelerated margins from operating leverage and efficiency investments, the analyst told investors in a research note. She added that Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST) is also the only public waste company its size not to be acquired, which provides "downside support to valuation on a takeout potential".
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 23 hedge funds were long Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST) at the end of the third quarter of 2022, compared to 17 funds in the prior quarter. Jim Simons’ Renaissance Technologies is the largest position holder in the company, with 686,959 shares worth $52.5 million.
In addition to Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN), Waste Management, Inc. (NYSE:WM), and Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG), Casella Waste Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CWST) is one of the leading recycling stocks to monitor.
5. GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 28
GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) is a diversified environmental services company operating in Canada and the United States. The company offers non-hazardous solid waste management, infrastructure and soil remediation, and liquid waste management services. Its solid waste management business includes the collection, transportation, transfer, recycling, and disposal of non-hazardous solid waste for municipal, residential, and commercial and industrial customers.
On November 2, GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) reported a Q3 non-GAAP EPS of $0.20 and a revenue of $1.83 billion, topping market estimates by $0.04 and $570 million, respectively. It is one of the premier recycling stocks to invest in.
CIBC analyst Kevin Chiang on December 14 raised the firm’s price target on GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) to C$50 from C$46 and maintained an Outperform rating on the shares.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 28 hedge funds were long GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) at the end of Q3 2022, compared to 25 funds in the last quarter. Robert Pohly’s Samlyn Capital is the largest stakeholder of the company, with 4.5 million shares worth $114.3 million.
Here is what Ave Maria specifically said about GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) in its Q2 2022 investor letter:
“GFL Environmental Inc. (NYSE:GFL) is a growing solid waste management company. In the first quarter of 2022, revenue increased 11.3% on an organic basis and 27.4% including acquisitions. At the company’s investor day in May, the management provided increased free-cash-flow guidance for 2022, 2023 and 2024., which looks very positive.”
4. Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 30
Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) is a Massachusetts-based company that provides environmental and industrial services in North America. The company operates through two segments, Environmental Services and Safety-Kleen Sustainability Solutions. The Safety-Kleen Sustainability Solutions segment offers pickup and transportation services for hazardous and non-hazardous containerized waste for recycling or disposal. Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) is one of the leading recycling stocks to invest in.
Baird analyst David Manthey on November 3 raised the price target on Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) to $155 from $150 and maintained an Outperform rating on the shares. The analyst sees a good setup for ongoing solid pricing and deferred waste streams, perhaps cushioning results, while PFAS/reshoring/increased blended oil sales could also augment his view.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 30 hedge funds were long Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) at the end of September 2022, with combined stakes worth $497 million, compared to 28 funds in the prior quarter worth $408 million. Ian Simm’s Impax Asset Management is the largest position holder in the company, with 1.12 million shares valued at $123 million.
Meridian Funds made the following comment about Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) in its Q3 2022 investor letter:
“Clean Harbors, Inc. (NYSE:CLH) is a leading hazardous waste treatment, storage, and disposal management company in North America and one of our longer-term holdings. Particularly impressive are its hazardous waste incinerators, which are nearly impossible to replicate. We also like its oil re-refinery business which is gaining recognition as a sustainable source of motor oil. Through cost controls and price increases, the company was successful in managing the inflationary environment during the period. Utilization of its incinerator network reached 90% during its most recently reported quarter and pricing increased 18% from a year ago. High and increasing base oil prices provided an additional boost to its re-refinery business, widening the spread between the price Clean Harbors charges for its refined oil and the price it pays for used oil. A resurgence in U.S. manufacturing activity and the accretive acquisition of HydroChemPSC also contributed to investors’ enthusiasm for the stock. Although our long-term outlook for Clean Harbors remains upbeat, we trimmed our position in the stock due to the company’s high debt balance as a result of the acquisition. We also believe the economic slowdown may eventually impact Clean Harbors, which operates in a late-cycle industry and therefore tends to have a delayed response to economic developments.”
3. LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 32
LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ) was incorporated in 1998 and is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois. The company deals in auto replacement parts, components, and systems used in the repair and maintenance of vehicles. LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ) provides scrap metal and other materials to metals and automotive recyclers. The company raised its latest quarterly dividend by 10% to $0.275 per share, which was paid to shareholders on December 1. The board also authorized a $1 billion increase and one-year extension to its stock repurchase program, lifting the aggregate repurchase authorization to $3.5 billion through October 25, 2025.
On July 12, MKM Partners analyst Scott Stember initiated coverage of LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ) with a Buy rating and a $68 price target. Prospects for LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ)’s North American business “have never been better” and the effective scaling of the European business has yielded gains in segment sales and profits, said the analyst, who added that “LKQ has turned into a cash flow-generating machine.”
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 32 hedge funds were long LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ:LKQ) at the end of September 2022, compared to 31 funds in the earlier quarter. ValueAct Capital is the leading stakeholder of the company, with 12.5 million shares worth $592 million.
Bonsai Partners mentioned LKQ Corporation (NASDAQ: LKQ) in its first-quarter 2021 investor letter. Here’s what they said:
“LKQ is the largest provider of alternative collision and mechanical automotive parts in the United States. In Europe, they are the leading distributor of general automotive maintenance parts and supplies. Its shares appreciated 20.1% during the quarter.
During the quarter, LKQ shared its fourth-quarter results: showing a slight revenue decline and a nearly 30% increase in quarterly profit Vs. the same period last year. COVID has proved a surprising catalyst for my investment thesis which revolves around optimizing their recent large acquisitions that were never efficiently integrated.
Admittedly, in addition to LKQ’s quarterly performance, thematically, there has been broad enthusiasm for “re-opening” trades, of which, LKQ has been a beneficiary. Most importantly, the prior overhang related to LKQ’s debt burden is now all but behind us. Their net debt to EBITDA ratio now sits below 2x, a stark change from the near 3x leverage ratio before the pandemic. At that time, LKQ’s leverage had the potential to spiral upward to nearly 4-5x if the business experienced a prolonged shutdown. It’s good to be past this issue.”
2. Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 33
Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN) is a provider of non-hazardous waste collection, transfer, disposal, and resource recovery services in the United States and Canada. The company offers collection, landfill disposal, and recycling services to residential, commercial, municipal, industrial, and exploration and production customers. It is one of the top recycling stocks to monitor. Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN) raised its latest quarterly dividend by nearly 11% to $0.255 per share, which was distributed to shareholders on December 1.
On October 24, Jefferies analyst Stephanie Moore initiated coverage of Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN) with a Buy rating and a $165 price target. The analyst said the stock is best-in-class amongst its waste peers with above-average pricing growth and margins due to its suburban market exposure, as well as the exclusivity from its franchise contracts. The analyst added that she views it has a clear line of sight into at least low double digit revenue growth in 2023.
According to Insider Monkey’s Q3 data, 33 hedge funds were long Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN), compared to 34 funds in the prior quarter. Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust is the biggest stakeholder of the company, with 2.15 million shares worth $290.4 million.
Conestoga Capital Advisors made the following comment about Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN) in its Q3 2022 investor letter:
“Waste Connections, Inc. (NYSE:WCN): WCN is a leading waste management service company that provides collection, recycling, transfer and disposal services in North America. This top ten holding performed well during the quarter given the consistency of its business model with stable volumes, strong pricing power and healthy margins.”
1. Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG)
Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 41
Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) is an Arizona-based company that offers environmental services in the United States. The company provides collection and processing of recyclable materials, collection, transfer and disposal of non-hazardous solid waste, and other environmental solutions. It is one of the best recycling stocks to invest in. On October 27, Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) reported a Q3 non-GAAP EPS of $1.34 and a revenue of $3.59 billion, outperforming Wall Street estimates by $0.12 and $60 million, respectively.
BMO Capital analyst Devin Dodge on December 7 downgraded Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) to Market Perform from Outperform with a price target of $148, down from $152. Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) has meaningfully outperformed the market this year, indicating robust industry conditions, strong execution, and an investor preference for defensive stocks, the analyst told investors in a research note. While solid waste stocks normally outperform deep into a recession, the much anticipated economic pullback has meaningfully been reflected in the relative share price performance, noted the analyst. As such, he sees lower potential returns over the next 12 months. Despite the downgrade, he still believes Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) could be attractive for individuals with a longer investment horizon.
According to Insider Monkey’s data, 41 hedge funds were long Republic Services, Inc. (NYSE:RSG) at the end of Q3 2022, compared to 33 funds in the last quarter. Richard Chilton’s Chilton Investment Company is a notable position holder in the company, with 1.38 million shares worth $188.5 million.
>>> Tetra Tech Wins $105 Million EPA Watershed Assessment and Protection BPA
March 7, 2023
PASADENA, Calif., March 07, 2023--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Tetra Tech, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTEK), a leading provider of high-end consulting and engineering services, announced today that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Water awarded the Company a five-year, $105 million Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) to restore and protect watersheds and water bodies throughout the United States.
Tetra Tech will identify, analyze, and evaluate surface water and coastal ecosystems to protect human health and aquatic environments from the impacts of pollution and the effects of climate change, including ocean acidification. Tetra Tech’s scientists will design monitoring programs, develop predictive models, and prepare technical guidance documents to assess chemical, physical, and biological integrity of water bodies. Our technical specialists will analyze model results and manage spatial datasets to develop effective management strategies for inland and coastal regions impacted by land-use related activities, stormwater and runoff, habitat loss, and invasive species.
"Tetra Tech has supported EPA’s Office of Water in developing science-based solutions for more than 40 years," said Dan Batrack, Tetra Tech Chairman and CEO. "This is Tetra Tech’s tenth consecutive EPA watershed management contract, supporting EPA in analytics, guidance, and training associated with the development and execution of watershed protection programs. We are pleased to continue using our Leading with Science® approach and Tetra Tech Delta technologies to assess and protect water bodies throughout the United States."
About Tetra Tech
Tetra Tech is a leading provider of high-end consulting and engineering services for projects worldwide. With 27,000 employees working together, Tetra Tech provides clear solutions to complex problems in water, environment, sustainable infrastructure, renewable energy, and international development. We are Leading with Science® to provide sustainable and resilient solutions for our clients. For more information about Tetra Tech, please visit tetratech.com or follow us on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook.
Waste Management - >>> WM excels at turning trash into cash for its investors. The provider of waste collection, disposal, and recycling services is the largest such company in North America. Its vast network of existing landfills puts it in a strong competitive position. Strict regulations and rigid homeowner opposition to new landfills make it unlikely that competitors will be able to wrest market share from the garbage king.
WM's profits are well-protected. The company passes on much of its free cash flow to investors via dividends and share repurchases, which boost the share price.
WM delivered its 19th consecutive annual dividend increase in late 2021, increasing it by 13%. Investors who buy shares today can expect many more dividend increases in the years ahead, which makes WM an ideal income stock.
>>> Ecolab picks Home Depot for launch of first consumer cleaning products
By Alyxandra Sego
St. Paul Business Journal
Feb 2, 2023
Ecolab Inc. (NYSE: ECL), the St. Paul-based maker of water treatment systems and cleaning chemicals, is launching its first-ever consumer product line.
The new line, Ecolab Scientific Clean, is being sold exclusively at The Home Depot (NYSE: HD), the home improvement retailing giant based in Atlanta.
Ecolab's Scientific Clean product line includes four product categories:
Pressure washer concentrate
Prices generally run in the $6 to $24 range.
Ecolab has sold cleaning products for years, but they've generally been aimed for commercial or industrial markets. The company's traditional customers include hospitals, airports, hotels and the like. That said, Ecolab's brand has been plenty visible to consumers in recent years, as companies nationwide made prominent displays of their Covid-era sanitization efforts.
“Every day, in countries all over the world, restaurants, hospitals and hotels put their trust in Ecolab products to keep their kitchens, operating theaters and guest rooms clean. For the very first time, our new Ecolab Scientific Clean products will bring 100 years of expertise and innovation to Home Depot customers,” said Ecolab President and Chief Operating officer Darrell Brown in a statement.
“Having Ecolab Scientific Clean on our shelves not only provides our Pro customers to deliver a professional clean, but it allows our DIY customers to bring that cleaning power into their homes, as well," said Jeff Kinnaird, The Home Depot's executive vice president of merchandising.
>>> EPA awards $1B to clean up 22 toxic waste sites nationwide
By MATTHEW DALY
WASHINGTON (AP) — Projects to clean up 22 toxic waste sites across the country will receive $1 billion from the federal Superfund program to help clear a backlog of hazardous sites such as landfills, mines and manufacturing facilities, the Environmental Protection Agency said Friday.
The money is the second installment in $3.5 billion appropriated under the 2021 infrastructure law signed by President Joe Biden. Sites targeted for cleanup include a lead-contaminated neighborhood on Atlanta’s Westside and a former dry cleaning solvents distributor in Tampa, Florida.
The money also will be used to speed cleanup of 100 ongoing Superfund projects across the United States, the EPA said. The agency has vowed to clear a longtime backlog in the Superfund program, which was established in 1980 to clean up sites contaminated with hazardous substances. The program has languished for years because of a lack of funding.
The EPA announced an initial $1 billion in funding from the infrastructure law in December 2021.
While the agency is moving faster to clean up contaminated sites in communities across the country, “our work is not yet finished,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement Friday. “We’re continuing to build on this momentum to ensure that communities living near many of the most serious uncontrolled or abandoned releases of contamination finally get the investments and protections they deserve.”
Of the new cleanup sites announced on Friday, 60% are in low-income or minority communities that are chronically over-polluted, Regan said.
Thousands of contaminated sites exist across the country as a result of hazardous waste being dumped — often illegally — left out in the open, or otherwise improperly managed, including in manufacturing facilities, processing plants, landfills and mining sites.
Superfund cleanups help transform contaminated properties and create jobs in overburdened communities, while repurposing these sites for a wide range of uses, including public parks, retail businesses, office space, homes and solar power generation, EPA said.
Besides the Atlanta and Tampa projects, money also will go to a groundwater contamination site in Indianapolis, a former tannery in Danvers, Massachusetts, and a former metal stamping and tool and die shop near St. Louis. The funding also includes new cleanup of a former General Motors foundry in Upstate New York that has been on the Superfund list since 1984. The site in Massena has long been contaminated by toxic chemicals known as PCBs and other pollutants.
In all, new projects in 14 states and Puerto Rico will receive funding, EPA said.
About $50 million will go to clean up lead contamination in a residential neighborhood in Atlanta. The Westside project has been waiting for years to access federal funds. Experts say it’s unclear exactly where the lead came from, but it is likely from metal foundries that were once common on Atlanta’s Westside.
The cleanup money “couldn’t come soon enough,” Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., said on a conference call Friday with Regan and other officials. "This accelerated timeline would not be possible without this historic investment.”
Similarly, a project in Tampa was identified as a Superfund site in 1999 but remains contaminated, said Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Fla.
The site is near where she and her husband got married, Castor said. In an apparent nod to Warnock's status as a pastor, Castor said that while "it's important to have faith, there's nothing like having resources'' to clean up pollution.