SSOE and Walbridge Team Together to Build the First ZF Transmission Plant in North America

Greenville, South Carolina, June 30, 2011 – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm, announced today that it is teaming with prime contractor Walbridge on the design of ZF Friedrichshafen AG’s first passenger car transmission plant in North America. Located near Greenville, South Carolina, the facility will produce fuel efficient, eight and nine-speed automatic transmissions for the passenger car and light truck market. Walbridge is leading the overall design and construction management team for the project. Read more

SSOE Receives Contractor Safety & Environmental Excellence Award from Marathon Petroleum LP Marketing & Transportation Engineering

Findlay, Ohio, June 29, 2011 – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm, announced today that it was recently awarded the 2011 Contractor Safety & Environmental Excellence Award from Marathon Petroleum LP Marketing & Transportation Engineering. The award recognizes SSOE as a top safety performer for their facility located in Findlay, Ohio. Read more

There’s a lot at stake when selecting a site for a new facility

Choosing the wrong consultant and especially the wrong property could be detrimental to your project budget and schedule. SSOE provides an overview touching on the important aspects of site selection and the details that will help you make an informed choice on a firm to partner with. In our site selection presentation, we explain our step-by-step process of securing solid ground for your facility, and how our way of working helps save you time, trouble, and money on your project. Read more

SSOE Group Welcomes Alexandra Segers, International Senior Account Executive / Program Manager

TOLEDO, Ohio, April 25, 2011 – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm, is proud to welcome Alexandra Segers as its new International Senior Account Executive / Program Manager.

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Feeling squeezed by greenhouse gas regulations?

Set Up an Effective Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Plan

In this month’s issue of Chemical Processing, SSOE Group’s Anna Koperczak, Senior Environmental Specialist, discusses the upcoming deadline mandated by the U.S. EPA. In this article Koperczak also breaks down the components of a successful monitoring plan necessary to fulfill this federal regulation. Click the link below to read Anna’s article in Chemical Processing magazine. “Set Up An Effective Greenhouse Gas Monitoring Plan”

Our Senior Environmental Specialist, Anna Koperczak, gives expert advice on how to set up a GHG monitoring plan. Anna has more than 20 years experience preparing environmental permits and helping clients comply with environmental regulations for their facilities and processes. She has utilized her extensive knowledge of reporting and permitting requirements for a variety of clients, including those in the automotive, energy, food, chemical, steel, and refining industries.

View the Q&A below

Federal Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Tailoring Rule

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What is it? In May 2010, the EPA issued a final ruling to increase the major source thresholds for GHGs from
100/250 TPY to 25,000 TPY, effectively “tailoring” the PSD and Title V permit programs to target only “major” GHG sources and major modifications. GHG’s include CO2, N2O, CH4, HFCs, PFCs, and SF6.
Why does it exist? To phase in permitting requirements and reduce the number of applications submitted at one time.
Who does it affect? All facilities applying for, renewing, or revising an air quality permit; or facilities that increase their GHG emissions by 75,000 TPY.
What’s required? Phase 1:Permits Issued Jan. 2, 2011 – June 30, 2011

  • PSD permit: new construction projects or modifications that increase GHG to more than 75,000 TPY are required to conduct a Best Available Control Technology (BACT) analysis.
  • Title V permits: only when applying for a new, renewing, or revising a permit.

Phase 2: Permits Issued July 1, 2011 – June 30, 2013

  • PSD permit: new construction projects that emit GHG emissions of at least 100,000 TPY, and modifications to existing facilities that increase GHG emissions by at least 75,000 TPY.
  • Title V permit: facilities that emit at least 100,000 TPY
How does SSOE help?
  • Help clients understand the permit requirements and how they apply to them.
  • Complete / coordinate permit applications and help revise processes and/or building plans to meet guidelines.
How does SSOE add value? SSOE applies its broad knowledge of industrial processes and facilities and full range of services to identify emissions issues before permits are submitted for review.

Mandatory GHG Reporting Rule

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What is it? In October 2009, the EPA issued the “Mandatory Reporting of GHGs Rule” that requires industrial facilities to report their GHG data and other relevant information. The Rule is referred to as 40 CFR 98 (or Part 98 Rule).The gases reported include CO2, N2O,and CH4.
Why does it exist? To gain accurate and timely GHG data that will inform future decisions.
Who does it affect? Facilities that emit 25,000 TPY of GHGs, and any of the following facility types:

  • Adipic acid production
  • Aluminum production
  • Ammonia production
  • Certain electricity generation
  • Certain manure management systems
  • Certain municipal solid waste landfills
  • HCFC-22 production
  • Certain HFC-23 destruction processes
  • Lime manufacturing
  • Nitric acid production
  • Petrochemical production
  • Phosphoric acid production
  • Silicon carbide production
  • Soda ash production
  • Titanium dioxide production
What’s required? Facilities that exceed thresholds are required to submit annual reports to the EPA.
How does SSOE help?
  • Help clients understand and interpret industry-specific requirements.
  • Identify processes and sources that emit GHGs.
  • Help create and implement an effective GHG monitoring plan.
  • Identify areas and strategies to decrease GHG emissions and increase efficiency.
How does SSOE add value?
  • Alleviate the cost and time of internal resources.
  • Experienced specialists know what data needs to be collected and calculations performed, as well as how to organize the reports to meet the EPA’s criteria.
  • Full range of services allow us to help implement components of GHG monitoring plan (i.e. integrate meters and controls systems).

Boiler MACT Rule –Major Sources

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What is it? In February 2011, the EPA issued new regulations regarding the emissions of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) from industrial, commercial, and institutional boilers.
Why does it exist? To regulate the emissions of HAPs, such as HCl, particulate matter, CO, mercury, and dioxins/furans from major sources of HAPs.
Who does it affect? Facilities with boilers that emit at least 10 TPY of any single HAP and/or at least emit 25 TPY of all HAPs. The rule covers new, reconstructed, and existing boilers.
What’s required?
  • All units with heat inputs less than 10 MMBTU/H are required to have biennial tune-ups.
  • Natural gas fired units with heat input equal to or greater than 10 MMBTU/H are required to have annual tune-ups.
  • All facilities are required to have a one-time energy assessment.
  • All facilities are required to be in compliance within three years of publication of the rules (February 2014).
  • Emissions limits for coal, biogas, and other fuel burning equipment.
How does SSOE help?
  • Help clients understand and interpret specific requirements.
  • Perform required energy assessments / boiler studies.
  • Identify areas and strategies to increase efficiency.
  • Help create a plan to update equipment / processes, and provide engineering and design support.
How does SSOE add value? Experience with various industrial boilers and comprehensive services, qualifies SSOE to identify cause and effect of emissions throughout both facilities and processes and provide integrated solutions.

Question and Answer with Anna Koperczak

Q: We need to develop a reliable monitoring plan to measure the level of greenhouse gas emissions in our facility. How do we get started?

A: To begin, you’ll need to identify the sources of GHG emissions in your facility. The obvious places to consider are any combustion sources, boilers and heaters for example, or the actual production of GHGs. Also look at any chemical reactions that emit GHGs.

Q: Once I know all the sources of emissions, how do I measure them? Are meters the best way?

A: Not necessarily. There are various ways to measure GHGs and you’ll want to determine the most efficient and accurate way for your circumstances. Meters are a common solution. Make sure you use the appropriate meter for the equipment. Consider too that you may already have some metering in place that can be used to measure GHGs. You can use a PLC to gather the information from the meters. Make sure to include the calibration of equipment in your step by step monitoring plan.

Measuring the amount of fuel a piece of equipment uses is another way to calculate the amount of GHGs it emits. Also, the throughput of a piece of equipment can also help you calculate the GHG level.

Another viable option for gathering information is to examine past utility bills and use the reports to determine emission levels over a period of time.

Q: How often do I need to gather information to satisfy the reporting and permitting regulations?

A: You will want to collect your data at a minimum monthly. That way you can see trends in emissions if there are issues.

Q: How long does it typically take to develop and implement a monitoring plan?

A: That depends somewhat on the size of the facility(s). I estimate three to four months for identifying the sources, establishing the best monitoring approach, calibrating equipment, and collecting data.

Q: What are my options for reducing GHG emission levels?

A: You have many options for reducing levels. Among them are converting from coal-fired to natural gas boilers, configuring your process to use fewer, larger boilers (or more small ones), updating older equipment, upgrading processes, recovering waste heat, and installing various types of equipment that reduce emission levels.

We help clients compare these solutions, taking into account the cost of equipment, labor, and maintenance, as well as the results they generate.

Q: When does it make sense to use an outside resource to handle these activities?

A: I think you first have to consider if you have the internal resources to keep abreast of the changing regulations as opposed to an outside resource whose job it is to do so. It is valuable to have the person filing reports know how the EPA wants the information structured and how to compile it efficiently. That comes with experience.

Since understanding current regulations, reporting, monitoring, and permitting require special skills, many companies prefer to use an outside expert rather than increase headcount. Another approach is to use an outside resource to train your staff to do some of the activities—calibrating the monitors and collecting data for example.

Q: What can we expect as next steps from the EPA in regards to reporting and controlling GHG levels?

A: There is little doubt that the EPA intends to eventually mandate that companies reduce their emissions to meet certain levels, regardless of whether they are seeking permits. As part of this, the emission levels of companies will become public knowledge.

Q: How would you advise companies to prepare for public disclosure of their GHG levels?

A: I’m advising our clients to consider how public knowledge of their emissions levels will impact all aspects of their business, the public’s perception of their environmental policies, their relationships with partners and vendors, and perhaps sales. Companies should start now to reduce their levels and see this as an opportunity to gain recognition as an environmental leader.

Four Roads to Energy Efficiency

Is your company eager to become more energy efficient and reap the financial rewards, but you aren’t sure where to start? Or maybe your company is one that equates energy efficiency programs to going on a diet. You know it would be good for you in many ways, and you keep talking about it, but you just haven’t made it happen. Now, with energy costs on the rise and emissions reduction legislation pending in Congress, there are more reasons than ever to commit. The U.S. Federal Government is one source for free tools and programs to help companies map out a strategy for reducing their energy consumption and costs. This article is an overview of the various programs, and ways companies can be recognized for their achievements in sustainability and energy reduction. Read more

SSOE Group Ranked 1st among Top Green Design Firms in South Central Construction’s 2010 Rankings

Nashville, TN, November 4, 2010 – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm announces it has been named to the number one spot for Top Green Design Firms in the recently released, revenue-based South Central Construction’s 2010 Top Design Firms rankings. Read more

SSOE Group named to number two spot for Industrial and Manufacturing Green Design Firms in ENR’s 2010 Rankings

TOLEDO, Ohio, October 13, 2010 — SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm, announced today it has been ranked the second largest industrial and manufacturing green design firm in the United States by Engineering News Record (ENR), the industry’s premier news publication. The ranking took into account revenue for design services generated from projects that have been registered with or certified by a third-party organization—such as the U.S. Green Building Council, Green Building Initiative, and Green Advantage. These organizations set standards for measuring a facility’s environmental impact, energy efficiency, or carbon footprint.

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SSOE Leads MEP and Structural Design Efforts for National Nuclear Security Administration’s Kansas City Manufacturing Operations

Kansas City, MO, August 24, 2010 – SSOE Group announced today that they have been selected to lead, as part of a multi-disciplined design team, all design efforts for MEP (Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing) and structural systems for a new campus to house the National Nuclear Security Administration’s (NNSA) manufacturing operations in Kansas City, Missouri. The facility will manufacture non-nuclear components for nuclear weapons.

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Impressive Results for SSOE Group in ENR’s 2010 Rankings

July 28, 2010, TOLEDO, OHIO – SSOE Group (www.ssoe.com), an international engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCM) firm, announced today it has been named to 6 Top 10 spots in the recently released, revenue-based ENR rankings, the premier publication covering the A/E/C industry. Read more

Area Development Magazine Article: “When Is Bargain Commercial Real Estate a Steal?”

SSOE Group’s Bob McCain discusses how to tell if you’re getting a steal when it comes to commercial real estate purchases and how to tell when bargain prices are too good to be true. Read more

SSOE Group Makes Second Industrial Acquisition in 2010: EOM-Ltd. specializes in Glass, Power, and Manufacturing

TOLEDO,Ohio, April 26, 2010 – SSOE Group, a global EPCM firm, has acquired EOM Ltd., a 60 year old multi-disciplined engineering firm that provides a broad range of technical services to the glass, power generation, and manufacturing industries. EOM will become part of SSOE’s Industrial Process strategic business unit. The acquisition will result in increased technical resources and services, and will allow the newly expanded team to provide more robust in-house expertise to current glass and power industry clients such as Owens Corning, St. Gobain Containers, Johns Manville, Pilkington, American Electric Power, Consumers Energy, and First Energy. Read more

Control Engineering Magazine Article: “How to Avoid Project Failure”

In this article learn 10 signs of impending failure and 7 ways system integrators say you can keep your automation projects on track. SSOE’s Dale Feldhaus, Industrial Process controls department manager and senior associate, is interviewed for this article. Read more

Toyota assembly plant ready for construction after massive civil engineering work completed by facility designer SSOE

BLUE SPRINGS, MISS.– September 27, 2007 – SSOE, Inc., one of the nation’s largest architecture and engineering firms, recently completed site design for the new Toyota assembly plant in Blue Springs, Miss. This is the largest site work and earth moving project that Toyota has ever undertaken in the US. It is a civil engineering feat that requires moving 16 million cubic yards of earth in order to make the site level enough to construct Toyota’s newest assembly plant on the site. Read more