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Vol. 17, No. 38 Week of September 16, 2012
Providing coverage of Alaska and northern Canada's oil and gas industry

Arctic Oil & Gas Directory: Weston Solutions integrates sustainable solutions for the future

Employee-owned company is dedicated to its clients and a job done right

Since expanding into Alaska in 2001, Weston Solutions has been meeting the needs of its clients with innovative solutions for the challenges of remote Alaska operations.

Weston staff members, such as Senior Project Managers Skip Koch and Judd Peterson, have long-term Alaska experience working closely with clients and regulators to design sustainable “lasting” solutions.

In 2004, one of Weston’s innovative designs was used for a 59-acre landfill closure on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. This was the first ever documented evapotranspiration cap for use in Alaska’s subarctic conditions. The project included planting native trees specifically chosen for the arctic environment, creating an improved moose habitat. An independent assessment conducted by the University of Alaska and accepted by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation indicates the cap is exceeding performance requirements.

Weston has designed and provided oversight for the restoration and remediation of numerous exploration drilling sites in remote locations throughout Alaska. Weston’s approach is to develop innovative solutions that comply with regulations, maximize efficiencies during implementation, and result in the promotion of habitat development that stimulates growth of the local flora and fauna. Many of these projects require extensive negotiations and consultations with private industry, regulators, contractors, Native Alaskan populations, and the public to develop solutions that meet the needs of all of these stakeholders.

As demonstrated in Alaska, Weston as a company has always strived to develop innovative solutions and provide benefit to its employees and the communities where its employees live and work. When Weston went searching for an office location in Dickinson, N.D., it discovered a rapidly growing area with a housing shortage. As a company that prides itself on its innovative solutions, Weston purchased the former Hartfiel Inn Bed and Breakfast on 3rd Avenue West for its regional office space. This historical 4,800 square foot building, built in 1912, offers enough office space for local staff and additional quarters for visitors from other Weston offices. “We are excited to have a real ‘home’ here in Dickinson,” said Matt McCue, client services manager, Weston. “Unlike many firms, we’re here for the long-term. This is our permanent residence and we’re excited. We’ve met a lot of phenomenal people already and we’re looking forward to meeting even more.” In fact, soon after moving in, Weston hosted a community partnering and volunteerism event to get to know their new neighbors even better.

Originally founded for wastewater treatment by Roy F. Weston, the staff of 10 based in Newtown Square, PA was formally incorporated in 1957 becoming “Roy F. Weston, Inc.” Since its early beginnings, the company has championed historic site preservation and property redevelopment, starting with the purchase of the John F. Lewis mansion in West Chester, PA in the late 60s where the company is still headquartered today.

Just ten years after settling in West Chester, Weston entered the global market with the formation of Weston International, Inc. The company became one of the nation’s first Superfund contractors in the early 80s, introducing the Real-Time Environmental Monitoring mobile laboratory, the only commercially available mobile lab designed for hazardous waste site cleanup and monitoring. In 1988 Weston was listed as one of the 200 Best Small Companies in America by Forbes Magazine.

Weston’s success persevered despite the declining environmental market of the 90s. In fact, Roy F. Weston was listed as one of the 125 Top People in the history of Engineering News-Record magazine in 1999 and Weston ranked as the 20th Largest Environmental Firm in the U.S.

The company continued to thrive into the new millennium, earning the Small Business Administration’s Eisenhower Award of Excellence for Subcontracting in 2000, the Web Business 50/50 Award for Online Excellence, and Business Finance Magazine’s 2000 Vision Award.

In 2002, Roy F. Weston, Inc. officially changed its name to Weston Solutions, Inc., further developing its enhanced use leasing, homeland security, water resources, and technology business lines. Weston redefined itself by becoming a 100 percent employee-owned environmental and redevelopment firm in 2003, having consistently provided safe, innovative, quality solutions to its clients for nearly 50 years.

Employee ownership has provided a strong basis for alignment of their 1,800 employees toward the common goal of continued growth and profitability. Not only has becoming an employee-ownership company strengthened Weston; it has also provided all employees with increased incentives to be more responsible toward its clients’ needs. Its employees literally have stock in the company’s future and in maintaining and developing solid client relationships. Its Alaska team, based in Anchorage, with an office in Fairbanks, stays well connected to its other locations in its 50 U.S. and 6 international offices through a redesigned award-winning intranet portal, which substantially increased collaboration between Weston offices. The quality of their work and relationships with returning clients ensures Weston provides the very best fit-for-purpose solutions.

In keeping with Weston’s role as the “trusted integrator of sustainable solutions”, Weston’s Alaska team prides itself on its ability to solve complex environmental and infrastructure problems. In the past ten years, the staff has grown from less than a dozen to its current team of 60, expanding to meet these challenges with a thorough understanding of Alaska’s environmentally-sensitive remote locations, diverse stakeholders, and unique regulatory and logistical challenges.

Currently, the Alaska office supports multiple federal, oil and gas industry, and specialty clients. Federal projects include long-term facilities remediation, characterization, and closure for multiple sites. Oil and gas industry project work includes leading design, permitting and construction oversight for the remediation and revegetation of former exploratory drill sites and reserve pits in Alaska’s Cook Inlet and North Slope regions; and support for resource development and environmental management programs (i.e., permitting, regulatory compliance, standard operating procedure documentation). Additional projects include leading revitalization programs for aging utility and energy infrastructure; and supporting safe, sustainable and environmentally responsible landfill options for waste generated in revitalized Cook Inlet drilling programs.

In addition to priding itself in providing clients with innovative sustainability services, Weston staff actively participates in local community revitalization. The company has painted apartments for Habitat for Humanity, donated materials to a local women’s shelter, and supported school fundraisers for under-privileged children. Twice a year the Anchorage office descends on their “Adopt-A-Road” to perform street cleanup. In May, it held its annual Make-A-Difference event, in which the “Weston Waste Wizards” set out to cast spells on the trash along local waterways in support of the Anchorage Waterways Creek Cleanup efforts to improve the health of the city’s creeks. In August, Weston staff joined citizens of the Mountain View neighborhood to co-sponsor cleanup and playground equipment for William B. Lyon’s community Park. Events like these are another way Weston expresses its commitment to making a difference in its communities and having fun while doing it.

Today Weston Solutions is a thriving company; the result of motivated and responsible employees dedicated to customer satisfaction, repeat business from its satisfied clients, multiple awards of excellence, and the fostering of new client relationships. Weston is committed to exceptional project quality, as exemplified in its reputation of getting the job done right the first time, for the past 55 years.

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