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IGS says geosynthetics make significant contributions toward UN Sustainable Development Goals
The 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations (UN) are a call to action for countries to unite to improve lives and protect the environment, the International Geosynthetics Society (IGS) said. Its remit is bold—from tackling climate change to supporting gender equality, from responsible production to championing peace and justice worldwide. The IGS shares the UN’s ambitious blueprint “to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all” in a number of ways. The appropriate application of geosynthetics can make significant contributions to the SDG, including preserving resources, access to clean water, emission reduction, climate change and other environmental issues. Some of the sustainable applications made possible by geosynthetics. Sustainable techniques ensure the reduction in energy consumption and emission via: Reduced on-site excavation and placement Reduced transport of bulky construction materials The facilitation of faster and simpler construction Extension of infrastructure design life and reduced maintenance Contribution to the production and storage of green energy Surface and groundwater are preserved and safeguarded from contamination via: Landfill lining and containment of hazardous waste Sludge dewatering and purification, and silt fence systems Construction of sludge and tailings lagoon capping reducing mine and quarry impact Gray water storage for use in irrigation and buildings Preservation of potable and irrigation water supplies by lining canals, dams and reservoirs Protection of glaciers and associated water resource preservation Prevention of run-off contamination Other construction materials can be replaced or reduced, such as: Sand and aggregate Concrete, lime and cement Steel Environmental protection and resilience are achievable via: Facilitation of nuclear waste disposal Facilitation of Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems (SUDS) surfaces Facilitation of green and blue roof construction Enable cost-effective construction of resilient flood defenses Provision of rapid emergency flooding prevention in disaster zones Coastal defense safeguarding property and natural habitats Avalanche and rockslide prevention and protection Earthquake-resistant infrastructure The 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. (Graphic courtesy of the United Nations). Economic growth and social welfare are enabled through: Faster and more cost-effective construction Connection of communities via more resilient infrastructure Unequalled solutions are possible via: Protection against contamination migration Permitting construction over otherwise unusable ground conditions Provision of “artificial rocks” (sand-filled geosynthetics) for erosion protection where only fine soils are available Facilitation of the construction of steep green slopes, walls and bridge abutments These are just some of the many ways geosynthetics contribute to the UN SDG thanks to the variety of sustainable development applications available. Geosynthetic solutions should be fully investigated on every infrastructure project to ensure they meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. For more on how geosynthetics are making a difference, download the IGS Sustainability eBook (PD) or visit the IGS's Sustainability page. This article first appeared on the IGS website, . Source: .
Solmax acquires TenCate Geosynthetics to become world's largest Geo player
Solmax, the global leader in the production of high-quality polyethylene geomembranes for industrial and environmental applications today announces it has reached an agreement with Koninklijke Ten Cate (the Netherlands) on the acquisition of TenCate Geosynthetics, a global provider of geosynthetics and industrial fabrics. Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Fonds de solidarité FTQ, Solmax's long-term financial partners, are both investing in this transaction. "This is the joining of two leading companies in their respective segments, recognized globally for the quality of their products and services, that are bringing their geosynthetic products together under the same roof for the first time. This transaction will increase their products' use in civil engineering, road infrastructure, hydraulic and environmental works," said Jean-Louis Vangeluwe, President of Solmax. "The size, capacity for innovation, geographic reach and resources of the new organization will further enhance the better position of geosynthetics as important products in the construction sector. This is a game changer in the history of geosynthetic manufacturers that develop lesser-known engineered products that are essential to protecting the environment and developing infrastructure projects." "I am highly pleased to position our company alongside Solmax. We both are among the leaders in our respective segments and now we will join together to create a stronger global leader in geosynthetics. The long-term vision of Solmax around sustainability aligns very well with that of TenCate Geosynthetics, and I am energized to lead my team confidently into this new business environment where we can contribute even more value together", said Wally Moore, CEO of TenCate Geosynthetics. "I'm delighted to see the family grow again. The addition of TenCate Geosynthetics to Solmax will have a positive overall effect on the geosynthetics sectors. Together, with our products, services and available resources, we will be able to make an impact on the quality of lives of individuals and society as a whole. I would also like to acknowledge the support of CDPQ and Fonds de solidarité FTQ in this transaction. They are two long-term partners that are always there for our business-transforming projects," concluded Jacques Côté, Founder and Executive Chairman of the Board of Solmax. The financial terms and conditions of the transaction were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2021 and is subject to customary approvals by regulatory authorities. The agreement is also subject to completion by TenCate Geosynthetics of applicable employee participation procedures, including consultation with its works council in the Netherlands. Source:
Another forward integration in the Geosynthetics industry
NAUE and Prosé join forces: Geosynthetic manufacturer NAUE and the Dutch company Prosé Geotechniek are announcing the joint venture NAUE Prosé. From product development, production and delivery to planning and installation, NAUE is a global leader in the full-service of successful, ecological, durable and sustainable geotechnical solutions. Prosé Geotechniek has a long history of supplying and handling geotechnical materials in the Dutch and international markets. The joint venture NAUE Prosé, will offer the complete range of NAUE products as well as installation services. An added value are the design services that the newly created company offers through the NAUE group’s very own engineering office. “We are very excited to announce the start of NAUE Prosé” said NAUE group’s Managing Director Alexander Naue. “This fusion will support our effort in serving every marketplace as best as we can. It is a clear signal for our commitment to the Dutch market.” “These are very exciting times” added Peter Prosé, Sales Director of NAUE Prosé. “In the past we have supplied NAUE products out of conviction for their high quality. Being a part of the NAUE group of companies now is a great milestone.” Source:
Geosynthetics can help preventing further steep increase in use of anthropogenic mass materials.
Human-made materials now equal weight of all life on Earth. The amount of concrete, asphalt, metal, and plastic on Earth is growing fast. This year may mark the point when artificial stuff outweighs living things. While the mass of Earth’s life forms stands at about 1.1 trillion metric tons (1.2 trillion U.S. tons) and has not changed much in recent years, the so-called “anthropogenic mass” of artificial materials is growing exponentially. The mass of everything people have built and made, from concrete pavements and glass-and-metal skyscrapers to plastic bottles, clothes, and computers, is now roughly equal to the mass of living things on Earth and could surpass that this year, according to research published today in Nature. The finding may bolster the argument that Earth has entered the Anthropocene, a proposed geologic epoch in which humans are the dominant force shaping the planet. As senior study author Ron Milo of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel puts it, the world is undergoing a material transition that “happens not just once in a lifetime, but once in an era.” The use of geosynthetic products can, in many applications, prevent or reduce the use of materials such as gravel, fill, concrete or, in road applications, asphalt. This has a positive effect on energy demand and carbon footprint (see LCA studies on this website), but also prevents a steep increase of artificial material used in construction and building industry. While that insight is more symbolic than scientifically meaningful, the material scale of the human enterprise helps explain how we’ve managed to transform global nutrient cycles, alter the climate, and drive myriad species to the brink of extinction. This isn’t the first attempt to weigh humanity’s impact on the planet. In 2016, a team of scientists estimated the weight of the “technosphere”—including not just wholly artificial buildings and products, but also the approximate weight of the land and seafloor that we’ve excavated, modified or trawled to build cities, plant crops, raise livestock, and catch fish. They came up with a figure of 30 trillion tons. Other recent studies have tracked changes just in the biological world, such as the amount of carbon stored in plants or the number of chickens on the planet. But to the authors’ knowledge, there hasn't been a comprehensive analysis looking at changes in the weight of the artificial and biological worlds simultaneously but separately. That has made it difficult for scientists to draw an apples to apples—or apples to iPhones—comparison. At the start of the 20th century, the mass of human-created stuff weighed in at 35 billion tons, or roughly 3 percent of global biomass. Since then, anthropogenic mass has grown exponentially to approximately 1.1 trillion tons today. It’s now accumulating at a rate of 30 billion tons a year, which corresponds to each person on Earth generating more than his or her own weight in manufactured stuff every week. Most of that stuff is concrete—humanity’s favorite building material—followed by gravel, bricks, asphalt, and metals. If current trends continue, these manufactured materials will weigh more than twice as much as all life on Earth by 2040, or about 2.2 trillion tons. Roughly 90 percent of the living world by weight, meanwhile, is composed of plants, mostly trees and shrubs. But while humans manufacture ever more materials each year, the weight of Earth’s plants has held relatively steady, due to what the authors describe as a “complex interplay” of deforestation, forest regrowth, and vegetation growth stimulated by rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels. Source:
The BontexGeo Group acquires Terageos SA
Last week the BontexGeo Group has agreed on the acquisition of 100% of the shares of the French based company Terageos SA. Through this acquisition, which was completed at the end of December 2020, BontexGeo aims to further grow its business and strengthen its presence in France. According to Rob van der Valk, MD of BontexGeo, ''The acquisition of Terageos enables both and additionally provides us a significantly increased presence in the French market''. Patrick Brochier, president of Terageos, added ''This transaction will allow our companies to work together even more closely and benefit from the expertise present in both companies''.
European Commission grants approval acquisition Low & Bonar by Freudenberg
Following the announcement of the offer published in September 2019 for Freudenberg’s planned acquisition of Low & Bonar PLC, the formal application for approval under the EU Merger Regulation (“EUMR”) from the European Commission (“Commission”) was submitted in March 2020 following extensive preliminary discussions and in agreement with the Commission. A decision on the application was received on April 17, 2020. The Commission has granted an unconditional Phase 1 clearance under the EUMR. Completion of the acquisition remains subject to the satisfaction or waiver of the remaining conditions to the offer, including the sanction of the scheme of arrangement by the Scottish Court. Given the current disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is not yet possible to establish a definitive timetable for completion of the transaction. Further announcements will follow as appropriate. Source: Freudenberg
Geosynthetic update: Impact Covid-19 on industry.
The construction & building industry and infrastructural projects are hit hard by the Covid-19 crisis. Projects are postponed, cancelled or continue at a slower pace. This impact, further strengthened by the recent drop in oil prices, has slowed down activities in basically all European countries and is expected to have a longer term effect. Geosynthetic industry. Although the impact on the geosynthetics business was limited in the first quarter of 2020, apart from the effect in Southern Europe, the second quarter of 2020 will be different. Many producers report decreased activities in the different regions. The reasons for less activity vary in the different countries, some of the reasons are: - Lock down in many countries - Less funding available from the private sector - Lack of workers in Western Europe, as many foreign workers have returned to their homeland - Material availability - The process for granting permits has slowed down, tenders are being postponed Whatever the reason might be, the effect will not only be short but is expected to be long term. The EIB (Economic Institute Building – the Netherlands) expects a 15% shrinkage of the construction production on the short term and also on the longer term the construction industry will be hit seriously. Future activities: Many producers have already lowered their production, either willingly or enforced because of the lockdown or strongly reduced order intake. With the reduced expectations for the mid long term, further actions are expected. Not only in relation to outstanding obligations, orders and deliveries and the impact on company processes but also in relation to how to ‘’use’’ the time presently available to many different departments within the company. Items to look into can be: - First and far most important, take care of your employees - Review existing contracts or take steps to safeguard legal interests. - Keep records, document the impact on the projects. - Use time for other relevant items & issues Sources:
BontexGeo re-joins EAGM
Bontexgeo has a long history, dating back to 1925, in various markets. Since the 1980’s BontexGeo have been developing, producing and providing woven and nonwoven geotextiles to the market. During that period, our company name has changed a couple of times (Bonar Technical Fabrics, Geotipptex, Bonar, Low & Bonar). What never changed is our commitment to quality and service. Bontexgeo is one of the leading suppliers in geotextiles with production locations in Belgium and Hungary. Bontexgeo has a proven track record of over 30 years in the supply of geotextiles.
Changes in board EAGM
During the November 2019 meeting of the EAGM, a new Board was elected, effective January 1, 2020. With this change, we are pleased to announce that Katja Gross is now President of the EAGM, and Jean-Pascal Mermet Vice-President. Katja is the first woman to lead the Association. Constitution of the Board of the EAGM as of January 2020: President: Katja Gross - DuPont de Nemours (Luxembourg) s.à r.l. Vice Presiden: Jean Pascal Mermet - TenCate Geosynthetics Europe Treasurer: Henning Ehrenberg - NAUE GmbH & Co. KG Members: Francesco Fontana - Manifattura Fontana SpA Mikael Møller Fibertex A/S Karl Wohlfahrt – Tensar