Since opening Earth Waste Systems nearly 20 years ago, Kevin Elnicki’s Rutland company has become a multi-million-dollar presence in waste metal recovery, demolition and salvage services throughout northern New England and New York.
That growth is continuing. Earth Waste Systems has been expanding its services, acquiring other businesses and widening its geographical scope of operations to include the southern United States.
It also intends to move its executive offices by year’s end to Nashville, TN; the firm’s corporate offices will remain in the former Eagles building at the corner of Center and Wales streets in Rutland, said Steve Medoin, the company’s operations consultant.
Earth Waste Systems employs upwards of 40 workers, with an annual payroll of $2 million. The company owns four scrap metal yards and a gravel pit of more than 300 acres in North Clarendon currently leased to Casella Construction, Inc.
Elnicki said he prides his company on “a progressive approach to environmental re-purposing with a strong tradition of excellent service, on-the-job safety and good old-fashioned values.” Customers and suppliers of Earth Works Systems include industrial and commercial businesses, governmental organizations, solid waste districts and individuals, he said.
Earth Waste Systems is divided into three specialized divisions: metal recycling, demolition and foreign auto parts. Over time, metal recycling has become his primary area of business, although demolition is still a big component. About 80 percent of the company’s demolition work is done in the greater Burlington area, with the remainder scattered around Vermont and New York. Demolition includes interior and exterior work, foundation removal and excavation.
Current demolition projects include interior work at the Middlebury College campus and the interior deconstruction of an aviation hangar at the Burlington International Airport.
Earth Waste Systems recently expanded its business to include using recoverable and recyclable materials for energy sources, most notably in collecting and transporting used rubber tires to industrial facilities in Canada and the Midwest that use sophisticated energy systems to provide for their own power needs. This takes waste products and uses them for fuel, reducing both existing waste and the facility’s energy costs.
Some of Earth Waste Systems’ success can be chalked up to its eye toward expansion through acquiring other businesses.
For instance, Elnicki said his scrap yards have been busier than ever this year dealing with record amounts of ferrous and non-ferrous metals, especially with copper prices at an all-time high. To keep up with the demand, Earth Waste Systems purchased a scrap yard this past spring in Glens Falls, N.Y. Earlier in the year, the company also acquired the former Gilmore Salvage Yard, a 17-acre scrap yard located on Route 4A in Castleton, VT.
Earth Waste Systems also bought The Wyre Wheel, a foreign automobile parts business in Middlebury, to help expand Earth Waste System’s foreign auto parts division.
“We have a computerized parts-locating system that makes it easy to track inventory, and if we don’t have what you looking for, we can find it fast,” Elnicki said.
The newly constructed offices at Wyre Wheel, inaugurated last fall, helped Earth Waste Systems meet growing customer demand for foreign automobile parts, as well as to focus on the recovery, processing and selling of metals with and without iron. “We aggressively purchase and sell all scrap metal materials including junk vehicles,” Elnicki said. “We operate three regional drop-off locations as well as on-site recovery and container services.” Earth Waste Systems’ fourth scrap yard is located in Morrisonville, N.Y., near Plattsburgh.
Still, demolition services continue to be a big part of Earth Waste Systems’ work. Middlebury College has been a long-time client; Earth Waste Systems also performed the demolition on the old Starr Library. Other recent demolition projects include the removal of 20,000 gallons of vertical tanks at the Rutland Southern Vermont Regional Airport late last year, and the interior demolition of the Marsh Hall and the Rowell Hall dormitories at the University of Vermont in Burlington. The company also handled the interior gutting of the historic Champlain Mills in Winooski, a housing demolition in Panton and the demolition of Newton’s Car Wash in Burlington.
Other work visible to local residents is the company’s ongoing contract with the Rutland Shopping Plaza to maintain the parking lot during snow storms.
Elnicki is further expanding Earth Waste Systems’ operations in the southern United States by relocating the company’s executive offices to Nashville and bidding on projects in growing states, particularly Alabama and Tennessee.
Earth Waste Systems is a member of the Rutland Regional Chamber of Commerce; Vermont Truck & Bus Association; Northeast Resource Recovery Association; National Demolition Association; Car-Part.com, and the Upstate New York Better Business Bureau.
Rutland Business Journal – Published September 5, 2008 BY PATRICIA MORALE