Nov 03, 2020

Black & Veatch Ceases Participation in Coal-Based Power Design and Construction

Black & Veatch announces it will cease participation in coal-based power design and construction

coal industrial water

Black & Veatch, an engineering and construction firm, has announced it will cease participation in any further coal-based power design and construction. This shift allows its workforce to further accelerate the creation of solutions that help transform the industry, including helping clients reduce dependence on coal power assets and minimize the impact of those assets to the environment.

The company says its transition away from any coal-related activity is about a commitment to sustainability and accelerating efforts toward a carbon-free energy future, reported the press release.

The company will fulfill current project commitments to completion in the coming months. Its efforts will focus on supporting clients through their transition to a balanced energy portfolio with cleaner energy sources and towards achieving their decarbonization and sustainability goals.

Black & Veatch has researched sustainability within the construction industry for several years. In 2019, the company released a report that analyzed two years of survey data collected from water, power, telecommunications, and commercial and industrial respondents. The data explored:

  • Sustainability: Increasing concerns over climate change are setting off alarms about the future of our water and power supplies, and fueling new scrutiny of the mechanics, cost, and ROI of sustainability solutions. The report frames the conflict bluntly: “Aligning the triple bottom line principles of people, planet, and profit may sound idealistic, but are those things inherently in conflict?”
  • Renewable energy: Today’s electric utilities, those historic keepers of a reliable and resilient grid, are being tested in their ability to align with growing clean energy and decarbonization mandates. The report cautions that without significant utility commitments to green energy, power-hungry industrial clients with growing sustainability goals may turn to renewables or distributed generation resources of their own.
  • Data’s risk-reward: The proliferation of smart devices that measure everything from consumption habits to asset management and system health continue to create new opportunities to collect and embrace actionable data. But to embrace data invites risk: With every new remote sensor, drone, iPad, or other IoT tool deployed on our systems, the more vulnerable we become to hackers and network intrusion.
  • From many, one: As powerful storms and wildfires raise questions about the reliability of traditional utility services, the rollout of projects to enhance resilience and improve operational efficiency continues. Advances in information technology, operational technology and artificial intelligence blur the lines between traditional organization silos. Yet, survey data shows that integrated planning is far from a high priority, signaling potential trouble for utilities in areas that are prone to nature’s worst.
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