SAN DIEGO — Environmental Business Journal (EBJ) has recognized WSP USA, a leading environment, engineering and professional services consultancy, with three of the publication’s 2022 EBJ Business Achievement Awards. Climate Change Business Journal (CCBJ) also honored the firm with a Project Merit award.
WSP received the EBJ Mergers and Acquisitions Award for a second consecutive year, in recognition of the consultancy’s ongoing strategic focus to expand its global Earth and Environment (E&E) business; the Project Merit Award for Flood Resilience on the Smith Pond rehabilitation project in New York; and the New Practice Award for establishing its Equity Center of Excellence.
In recognition of climate change industry achievements, CCBJ recognized WSP with a Project Merit: Climate Risk Model award for its work on a vulnerability assessment of critical infrastructure on Florida’s Gulf Coast.
“WSP is honored and grateful to be recognized with these awards from EBJ and CCBJ,” said Joe Sczurko, president of the Earth and Environment business line at WSP. “As WSP has grown, so have the opportunities for our teams to advance and deliver innovation, collaboration and effective Future Ready® solutions that benefit our clients today and for the years ahead.”
The 2022 EBJ Business Achievement Awards Ceremony will be held at the Environmental Industry Summit XXI, which takes place March 22-24 in San Diego.
Mergers and Acquisitions Award
In September 2022, WSP continued expanding its global E&E business with its acquisition of the Environment & Infrastructure business (E&I) from John Wood Group plc.
The acquisition added 5,800 personnel globally, increasing WSP’s E&E staff to nearly 20,000, and greatly enhanced WSP’s presence in the U.S., Canada and the UK. In the U.S., the acquisition more than doubled the size of WSP’s E&E business to approximately 5,000, creating nationwide leadership and scale, as well as expanding WSP’s capabilities in the water sector.
The integration builds on the firm’s portfolio in environmental engineering, remediation consulting, environmental permitting, inspection and monitoring, in addition to environmental management services to government, industrial, infrastructure, oil and gas, power and water. It helps clients across all sectors reduce their environmental impact and build more resilient organizations and infrastructure.
Project Merit Award: Flood Resilience
After Superstorm Sandy devastated the east coast of the U.S. in October 2012, the New York Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery mobilized to protect New York’s residents and natural resources. With increased severity and frequency of flood events, Smith Pond and the adjacent Village of Rockville Centre in coastal Long Island became increasingly vulnerable to flooding. WSP is recognized for integrating flood resilience into the community while enhancing ecosystem function and augmenting public access to the waterway.
WSP’s design addresses riverine flooding and natural resource protection. Protective and restorative features of the project include invasive plant species removal and native species planting; design and construction of a fish ladder to reintroduce the migration of American eel and herring; improved public connectivity with upgraded overlook areas and a lighted, porous paved greenway; and upgraded parking lots with porous pavement to reduce stormwater runoff.
New Practice Award: Equity Center of Excellence
Infrastructure historically and currently creates disproportionate benefits, impacts and generational resiliency for communities of color, and others who are overburdened and underserved, including the realms of public health, economic opportunity, access barriers, anti-displacement development and more. WSP was recognized for establishing the Equity Center of Excellence (ECE) to address these inequities through technical decisions and policy work with governments and private company clients, and academic research.
Established in early 2022, the ECE collaborates across WSP’s businesses like transportation, water and energy to operationalize equity in its projects via equity analyses, inclusive community engagement, accessible and participatory design, and equitable project alternative evaluation criteria. Considering indicators like race, income and pollution, the ECE is advancing resolutions to bifurcating infrastructure through Reconnecting Communities projects, prioritizing zero emission bus implementation in equity communities and creating an equity data business case for project prioritization for long-range regional planning.
Project Merit Award: Climate Risk Model
WSP prepared a vulnerability assessment of critical infrastructure for Pinellas County, a peninsula between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico on Florida’s Gulf Coast and home to one million people living near sea level. The assessment, described as a first of its kind for communities in the U.S., generated data specifying the causes, effects and consequences of changing conditions to support capital investments and policies to mitigate or adapt to climate change impacts.
The climate risk model included the development of data by the University of Florida, working as a partner, to represent future storm surge conditions, reflecting the effects of higher water levels from coastal storms, including surge depths and extents, and wave action. These were developed for the set of return periods found in most FEMA analysis efforts, and for multiple values for sea level rise. A countywide asset database developed for this study captured water, wastewater, stormwater, transportation, natural gas and electrical infrastructure. This data was attributed with flood elevations and damage costs, including time of repair, to determine the lifecycle cost of climate change on at-risk assets.
The assessment introduced a process that enables the lifecycle quantification of risk to help prioritize resilience investments. This rich data fabric also enables cost-benefit analysis of any recommended action. During the project, WSP also conducted facility-level assessments and developed recommendations for adaptation.
Publications of Environmental Business International Inc., EBJ and CCBJ provide strategic business intelligence to the environmental industry. The Business Achievement Awards program recognizes business performance in a range of areas, including strategic growth, mergers and acquisitions, exceptional projects and technology development.
About WSP USA
WSP USA is the U.S. operating company of WSP, one of the world’s leading engineering, environment and professional services firms. Recognized on Fast Company’s Brands that Matter List for 2022 as a top Community-Minded Business, WSP USA brings together engineers, planners, technical experts, strategic advisors and construction management professionals who are dedicated to collaborate in the best interests of serving local communities. WSP USA designs lasting solutions in the buildings, transportation, energy, water and environment markets. With more than 15,500 employees in 300 offices across the U.S., WSP partners with its clients to help communities prosper. wsp.com
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