Locus EIM SaaS environmental software selected by Hudbay Minerals

The Locus EIM SaaS with integrated GIS mapping will streamline environmental field and analytical data management and reporting for Hudbay Minerals

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., 19 June 2018 — Locus Technologies (Locus), the industry leader in multi-tenant SaaS EHS and environmental management software, is pleased to announce that Hudbay Minerals, a premier mining company in Canada, will use Locus EIM to improve their environmental data management for field and analytical data reporting. In addition to the standard features of Locus EIM, Hudbay Minerals is opting to use Locus’ GIS+ mapping solution, Locus Mobile for iOS, and the robust LocusDocs document management solution to enhance and streamline their processes.

Locus EIM and the integrated GIS+ solution will help Hudbay Minerals to improve efficiency of sampling and monitoring activities for both field and analytical data. The SaaS solution is enhanced by Locus Mobile for field data collection, which works offline without any internet connection.

“The Hudbay team in Arizona looks forward to working with the Locus team and using the system,” said Andre Lauzon, Vice President, Arizona Business Unit at Hudbay.

“By using the powerful smart mapping technology of Locus GIS+, powered by Esri and integrated with all the functionalities of Locus EIM, Hudbay Minerals can save data queries as map layers to create more impactful visual reports,” said Wes Hawthorne, president of Locus Technologies.

From the foundations of Rome to global carbon emissions reduction

Does the solution for over 5% of world CO2 emissions lie in the 2000-year-old concrete-making technology from ancient Rome?

Concrete is the second most consumed substance on Earth after water.  Overall, humanity produces more than 10 billion tons (about 4 billion cubic meters) of concrete and cement per year.  That’s about 1.3 tons for every person on the planet— more than any other material, including oil and coal.  The consumption of concrete exceeds that of all other construction materials combined. The process of making modern cement and concrete has a heavy environmental penalty, being responsible for roughly 5% of global emissions of CO2.

Scientists explain ancient Rome’s long-lasting concrete

So could the greater understanding of the ancient Roman concrete mixture lead to greener building materials? That is what scientists may have discovered and published in a 2017 study, led by Marie Jackson of the University of Utah.  Their study uncovered the Roman secrets for formulating some of the most long-lasting concrete yet discovered.  Our ability to unlock the secrets of ancient concrete formulas is dependent upon interdisciplinary analytical approaches utilized by the Jackson heat group and could lead to further discoveries that would reduce cement-based carbon emissions.

Unlike the modern concrete mixture which erodes over time, the Roman concrete-like substance seemed to gain strength, particularly from exposure to sea water.  And most importantly, the process generates fewer CO2 emissions and uses less energy and water than “modern”, Portland cement-based concrete.

[sc_icon icon=”chevron-right” shape=”circle” color=”#52a6ea” size=”small” link_target=”_self”] Read the full article here.

NASA now says massive methane cloud over U.S. Southwest is legitimate

Several years ago, NASA scientists discovered a cloud of methane gas over the Four Corners of the American southwest that measured about the size of Delaware. The unusually high readings were dismissed then; however, a new study today confirms that the methane hot spot is legitimate.

“We didn’t focus on it because we weren’t sure if it was a true signal or an instrument error,” said NASA research scientist Christian Frankenberg, who works in NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratories in Pasadena, California.

The Christian Science Monitor website states that a 2,500 square mile methane cloud over the region where Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, and Arizona connect traps more heat in a 1-year period than all of Sweden’s annual carbon dioxide emissions.

To provide an overview of gases that endanger the Earth’s atmosphere, methane gas is the most powerful of the greenhouse gases. Carbon dioxide is another greenhouse gas, and is more abundant in our atmosphere. However, methane is more effective at trapping heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide.

A new study published 10 October 2014 in the journal Geophysical Research Letters takes a look at the data discovered several years ago and confirms what we now know to be North America’s largest methane hot spot. According to lead author of the study, Eric Kort, a professor of Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Sciences at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Michigan, the source of the methane is from extensive coal mining activity in the San Juan Basin. According to Kort, the Basin is “the most active coalbed methane production area in the country.”

There has been a notable increase in fracking in that region. Both Kort and Frankenberg believe that the earlier coal mining is most likely to blame for the methane cloud.  From 2003 to 2009, the study shows there were 0.59 million metric tons of methane released each year — 3.5 times more than previous estimates.

According to Kort, “The results are indicative that emissions from established fossil fuel harvesting techniques are greater than inventoried. There’s been so much attention on high-volume hydraulic fracturing, but we need to consider the industry as a whole.”

Metals and Mining Companies must Work Ahead to Manage Water Risks

According to analysis from Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) and Eurizon Capital, metals and mining companies that take action now to manage their water risks will be much better off financially in the future.

The research findings state that water stress is the most reported risk to operations- being identified as so by more than two-thirds of the sample. The majority of participating businesses were severely hit by water-related issues in the past five years, and almost half of the companies expect water stress to affect their businesses in the next five years. Also, with these negative water impacts comes increased spending.

However, the CDP report also finds that companies that manage and report on these water issues are also the ones that experience better financial returns. Companies that properly plan for the future get to avoid the increased operating costs, lower revenues, and decreased shareholder value that comes along with poor water stewardship.

An inadequate volume or quality of water can significantly decrease access to commodity reserves that are essential to the business operations of mining and metals companies. With such an important resource, it is obviously critical that it be properly managed and reported on. Luckily, there are tools that exist today, such as Locus’ robust environmental management software systems, that can help these companies effectively manage their water risks.

Locus Introduces Conflict Minerals SaaS Module

New Locus module to help companies comply with conflict minerals ruling

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., 22 July 2013 — Locus Technologies (Locus), the leader in cloud-based environmental compliance and information management software, has introduced the conflict minerals module to its comprehensive SaaS platform. The conflict minerals module will provide companies with the tools necessary to comply with section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, the new conflict minerals regulations adopted by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Locus developed the new module to help companies oversee their use of conflict minerals such as gold, tin, tantalum, and tungsten more easily through a thorough checklist and through interactive mapping functionality. The module serves as a centralized point of reference through which companies can track, manage, and aggregate information from their suppliers about conflict minerals by product, division, or business unit. The module will make the due diligence and reporting obligations that accompany this new ruling less expensive and time-consuming. It will also support the audit capabilities as required by law.

“We recognized the burden being placed on certain customers when the conflict minerals ruling was finalized, and saw an opportunity for Locus to help. Performing conflict minerals reporting through spreadsheets or home-built systems for a large Fortune 100 company can easily consume the time of more than 10 full-time employees,” said Neno Duplan, President and CEO of Locus. “Locus is continuously striving to stay on top of new rules and regulations, and the web-based, multi-tenant architecture of our software solutions allow us to easily add new functionality and updates to our state-of-the art cloud platform. By introducing this new module, we hope that complying with the SEC’s conflict minerals rule will no longer be such a daunting and expensive task.”

The U.S. SEC finalized this conflict minerals ruling in August 2012. The rule requires companies to publicly disclose their use of conflict minerals that originate from the Democratic Republic of Congo or its adjoining countries. Locus’ Conflict Minerals module will be available to both new and existing customers in fall 2013 and could be used to facilitate the current year filings.

Roca Honda Resources, LLC Selects Locus’ Cloud Software

Roca Honda Resources to manage environmental data in EIM

SAN FRANCISCO, California, June 6, 2011 — Locus Technologies (Locus), the industry leader in Web-based water, energy, and environmental software, announced today that it has been awarded a contract to manage environmental data for Roca Honda Resources, LLC (“RHR”).

RHR, headquartered in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is a joint venture between Sumitomo Corporation, Sumitomo Corporation of America and Strathmore Resources, US Ltd. Located in the Grants Mineral District of New Mexico, the Roca Honda uranium development project is one of the largest and highest-grade proposed uranium mines in the United States in more than 30 years.

“Locus’ software is a powerful tool for organizing, evaluating and visualizing large volumes of environmental data,” said Dr. Neno Duplan, President and CEO of Locus. “We are very pleased that Roca Honda Resources recognizes the value of EIM in managing its environmental data and is incorporating it as an integral part of its operations.”

“Developing our resources prudently and efficiently, while identifying and managing potential environmental impacts related to our operations, are critically important to Roca Honda Resources. Locus’ software will allow us to share information more quickly and efficiently between our field operations and our scientists, and evaluate data faster, ultimately contributing to a more environmentally sound management practice and efficient operation,” said Mr. John DeJoia, Senior Vice President of New Mexico operations and Manager of Roca Honda Resources, LLC.

Initially, Locus will be deployed to manage data for the Roca Honda site. However, Mr. DeJoia also expressed an interest in investigating the potential use of Locus’ software at other sites in the future.

New Locus Web Module Organizes Geological Information: Organize, Display and Report Geo-Data with eGeo

Organize, Display and Report Geo-Data with eGeo

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., March 24, 2008 — Locus Technologies (Locus), the industry leader in web-based environmental data and information management services, announced today the expansion of its award winning ePortal software with a new module, eGeo, which organizes geological and geotechnical data on the web.

eGeo is available to Locus’ existing Environmental Information Management (EIM) customers immediately and free of charge.

eGeo eliminates the need for third-party borehole log applications, fence diagrams, or CAD drawings and for yet another disconnected database application, login and software license. eGeo is fully integrated with Locus’ award winning EIM Web 2.0 analytical data management system and with the Locus ePortal, providing users with single sign-on access to a powerful set of geo-data management tools.

Geological site investigation processes generate tremendous amounts of data, including geological quality and geotechnical properties. Field investigation results such as borehole drilling, geophysical testing, Cone Penetrometer Testing (CPT) and Standard Penetration Testing (SPT) all must be collected and analyzed. This information needs to be validated, managed, reported and preserved. Ironically, while companies invest millions of dollars to collect their data, rarely is it well-organized or readily accessible.

Previously, geo-data, such as borehole logs, were entered into expensive stand-alone software applications, spreadsheets or CAD systems that had little or no data analysis capability. Users could not easily retrieve this content or correlate it with similar geological and analytical chemistry data. Data had to be downloaded, merged and analyzed as precious time was lost and consulting hours piled up.

Locus’ eGeo, an integrated module in Locus’ ePortal, is a web-based application that instantly delivers, sorts, and assembles geo-data into highly nuanced reports, boring logs, CPT logs, SPT Logs, cross sections, charts, and maps—including raster image overlays, and mashups with Google Maps and pictures. As a result, geological information can be quickly visualized and analyzed.

“eGeo and our other software tools meet a huge need in the field of geotechnical and geological data management,” said Locus President and CEO, Dr. Neno Duplancic. “By offering up graphical, mapping, and other applications in our portal, users are able to view, download, and print information from each application in a uniform manner,” continued Duplancic. “This exciting new functionality comes without the need to store large image files on the server end, minimizing storage and Internet traffic requirements.” said Duplancic.

“Our tools give corporate managers something new, a means to quickly view and click through any aspect of the environmental status of their sites from within a single application. Geologists, geotechnical and environmental engineers, and site owners can use eGeo to look at their data with the same ease that oil companies use multi-million software applications to visualize and map underground oil reserves,” said Duplancic.

“Information management technologies based on Web 2.0 technology can help businesses and governments characterize environmental problems faster and more easily so that valuable resources can be spent designing solutions instead of searching for information or synchronizing disconnected applications, spreadsheets or databases.” Duplancic said.

The Internet and Environmental and Geotechnical Data


1 January 2003 — “Data, data everywhere and not a drop to use.” Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s original verse was actually about water, but the result is the same for today’s environmental and geotechnical engineers and site owners as it was for the poet’s ancient mariner: drowning in a sea of information that is as unusable as salt water is for drinking.

Investigations, cleanups, and post-closure monitoring and maintenance of contaminated waste sites can generate enormous amounts of data. At large complex
sites, it is not uncommon to drill hundreds of boreholes and wells, collect tens of thousands of samples, and then analyze each of these for several hundred contaminants to ascertain the nature and extent of contamination and geotechnical properties. The information from these various phases, which may eventually include a million or more sampling and analytical records, is typically entered into a database, or worse, into a spreadsheet. With so much data to manage, precious resources are squandered on unproductive administration tasks.


What’s usually done?
Most companies with environmental problems do not store their own environmental data. Instead, they rely on their consultants for this service. Larger companies with particularly troublesome or multiple sites are often reticent about “putting all their eggs in one basket” and opt instead to apportion their environmental work among multiple consultants.

Rarely do all consultants use the same environmental database management system. And equally rare is the customer who insists on this. The end result is that the company’s environmental data are stored in various stand-alone or client-server systems at different locales.

If another consultant is hired to do some specialized work, such as risk assessment, data must usually be downloaded into files, then uploaded, and after much “massaging,” installed into the new consultant’s system. Often the data in these systems are not readily accessible to the consultant’s engineers and geologists, or to the companies who actually “own” it. Instead, information requests must go through specialists who know how to extract data from the system.

As for all the various documents and reports, these are often stored in a variety of locales and formats. Considerable time can be lost tracking them down and delivering them to the appropriate personnel. When tasks must be approved from multiple individuals, the necessary documents are sometimes passed sequentially from one person to another, thereby resulting in significant and unnecessary delays at high cost to the client.

All in all, it is not uncommon for environmental and related project information to be handled and processed by dozens of people, in different ways, with few standards or quality control practices governing the various steps in the process, and with no central repository.

With so much information to deal with, it should not come as a surprise that many companies find themselves drowning in data but starving for knowledge.


What’s out there?
There is no lack in the marketplace of computerized tools to help companies manage and process this information. However, these typically exist and function as islands of technology rather than as part of an integrated package or system.

Complicating the matter is that these individual tools are sometimes stand-alone applications that need to be installed on each user’s computer whereas others are client-server systems that must be accessed over a dedicated network.

Much rarer is an Internet-based solution. Yet many of the problems and inefficiencies described here can be reduced, if not eliminated, by turning to Internet technologies.


What about the Internet?
An easy-to-query Internet-based environmental database management system into which all consultants on a project upload their field and analytical data eliminates the incompatibility and accessibility problems. There is no need to transfer data from one party to another, because all interested parties are able to query and, as needed, download information from the same database using their web browsers. Further inefficiencies can be wrung out of the data acquisition and reporting process by turning to the use of hand-held devices and remote control and automation systems to upload field and sampling data more quickly and reliably. The Internet need not only be used just to store data on site conditions. It can also be used as the primary repository for the various permits, drawings, reports, and other such documents that are generated during the course of a site investigation or cleanup. Having all this information stored in a single place facilitates communication among all interested parties, improves project coordination, and
decreases the overall costs of environmental remediation.


What are the obstacles?
Why have most consulting firms made little if any effort to make site-related documents and data accessible over the Web? Explanations for their failure are many but foremost could be their unwillingness to do anything that would reduce their revenues or their clients’ dependence on them.

Because their clients are far removed from the processes of loading data, running queries, and generating reports, they are in no position to pass judgement on, or recommend improvements in, their consultants’ data management practices. On infrequent occasions, a client of a consulting firm will (1) encounter or hear about another environmental information management system, and (2) be sufficiently motivated to look into its pros and cons.

This motivation, however, does not translate into expertise in the area. So in the end, the client will typically turn to its consultant(s) for advice and assistance. I need not spell out the inevitable outcome of this process.


What about the future?
In the years ahead, the short shrift given to information management practices and techniques will change, particularly as more and more contaminated waste sites after being cleaned up, enter the O&M or what in some circles has come to be called the long-term stewardship (LTS) phase.

Information management costs, together with those associated with sample collection and analysis and data evaluation and reporting, are expected to consume over half of the expected annual LST budget for sites in this phase. Considering that the LTS phase often lasts for decades and that an estimated 300,000 – 400,000 contaminated sites exist in the United States alone, it is clear that both industry and government face substantial “stewardship” costs in the years ahead.

Because most of these charges will be related to information management, activities and expenses in this area will come under increasing scrutiny from those footing the bill. As a result, firms involved in data collection, storage, and reporting at these sites will be forced to evaluate their practices. In so doing they will come to realize, reluctantly or not, the benefits of adopting Internet-based tools and systems.

For the past three years I have been in charge of the development and implementation of the environmental industry’s first integrated, web-based system for managing and storing sampling and analytical data and project documents. The system includes:

  • An environmental information (analytical data-base) management system
  • Two hand-held applications to record water level readings and compliance data
  • An alternative to traditional GIS that is based on a new Web graphics format and XML-based language called Scalable Vector Graphics
  • Project management tools
  • Automatic emailing and calendar reminders
  • Document storage and retrieval, on-line collaboration opportunities
  • Remote control, automation, and diagnostics of process and treatment systems for water, groundwater, wastewater, air, and soil

I have seen the implementation of remote control and automation technologies and document storage and retrieval tools reduce the monthly costs of monitoring and maintenance at a site of a diesel spill in a remote mountainous area from $10,000 to $1,000 for an investment of only $30,000. I have also seen the data acquisition and reporting costs at a large site in the O&M phase decline by over 20% after the system was implemented.

The only individuals unhappy with this decline are those who were previously “forced” to either snowmobile or ski into the site during the winter months when the roads to it were impassable.

By adopting such new monitoring, database, and web technologies, a typical Fortune-100 company with a portfolio of 50 sites, whose net present value long term (30-years) monitoring costs are in the $100 million range, could lower these expenditures by $30 million dollars or mores.

If these numbers and predictions are correct, industry and government stand to benefit immensely in the years ahead from increased usage of the Internet as the primary repository and vehicle for the storage and delivery of environmental information and documents.

Innovative & Award Winners Section, Web-Based EIM Solves Data Management Chaos

ENR Magazine

23 December 2002 — When the Lucchini Group of Italy embarked on acquisition strategy to become the largest long-steel products company in Europe, it acquired the environmental liabilities of steel plants across Europe.

Lucchini’s acquisition of France’s Ascometal in 1999 was a centerpiece in its growth strategy. However, the company also gained ownership of a number of sites – some originating from the time of Napoleon – that had been the subjects of many environmental investigations. Lucchini needed to quickly digest and organize the data from these studies to ensure compliance with emerging European Union environmental laws and regulations.


Enter Locus and the Internet
Lucchini recognized the benefits of the Internet for managing their burgeoning amounts of environmental data. To meet their need, Lucchini turned to Locus Technologies who was building the first Web-based, enterprise-level environmental information management system (EIM) to server companies such as FMC, Union Pacific Railroad, Philips Semiconductor, Waste Management, and Schlumberger, and its alliance partner, Alstom Power.

Instead of leaving data and reports buried in offices across Europe, Locus’ EIM system and LocusFocus provided Lucchini with a central repository that can be accessed via the Internet any time, from anywhere. “Lucchini cut its environmental costs and standardized its information management processes by deploying LocusFocus,” said Dr. Francesco Caforio, director of Lucchini’s environmental programs in Paris, France. “The system has also provided us with due diligence cost reduction on the M&A front.”

EIM has the capabilities engineers, scientists, and managers require: access to lists of methods and chemicals, a planning module, forms for entering field data, a utility to upload electronic data deliverables (EDDs), and an extensive reporting and plotting module. However, it also has less common components, such as a calendar module for viewing information on sampling events and uploaded EDDs, emailing capabilities, an electronic data verification and validation module, a customizable EDD loader, and a flexible cross-tab report writer.

The system also include eGIS-SVG, a new way to view site maps and data, based on scalable vector graphics, the emerging standard developed by the World Wide Web Consortium for viewing graphical information over the Internet.


Electronic Glue
Communications technologies, such as XML and Web Services, can knit the different parts of fragmented environmental business into a more coherent whole. “The key,” said Mr. Chris French of Honeywell, a company that recently entered into Beta testing of Locus’ EIM system, and itself a leader in applying digitization to all its business processes, “is to standardize, automate and centralize the fragmented array of company-wide and outside consultants information systems, utilizing metrics to quantify the business case. Our six sigma examination shows substantial variability in the quality, efficiency, and cost of current “silo” data management systems. Pilot testing has shown the potential for substantial downstream cost savings by digitizing and standardizing the process through the adoption of systems such as LocusFocus.

Locus Technologies announces formation of Locus Technologies International and the award of project to perform “Etude De Sol” studies in France

WALNUT CREEK, Calif., 10 May 2000 — Locus Technologies announced today the formation of Locus Technologies International, LLC, (LTI) a fully owned subsidiary of Locus Technologies, to focus on international markets. LTI has opened its first branch in Paris, France.

LTI, in partnership with ALSTOM Environmental Consult, S.A.R.L. of Paris, also announced today the award of a project to perform environmental assessment studies (Etude de Sol) under French regulatory framework for all Ascometal plants in France. Ascometal, a member of the Lucchini Group of companies from Brescia, Italy, is Europe’s largest producer of sheet metal. The Lucchini Group operates steel plants in Italy, France, and Poland.

“We are very excited to continue our relationship with the Lucchini Group and Ascometal, which started during 1999 environmental due diligence for acquisition of Ascometal plants by the Lucchini Group. Our client has realized the enormous potential of Locus Technologies’ Internet-based solutions for the environmental industry, and we are pleased to expand these services into the rapidly growing European environmental market,” said Dr. Neno Duplancic, president and CEO of Locus Technologies and LTI.

In addition to Part A and Part B soil studies required under French environmental laws, LTI will also apply its LocusFocusTM Internet-based technology to provide Ascometal with a comprehensive environmental portal to manage all aspects of their environmental program, such as document management, collaboration, and analytical information management.