Covanta Holding Corporation Reports 2021 Third Quarter Results

MORRISTOWN, N.J.  – Covanta Holding Corporation (NYSE: CVA) ("Covanta" or the "Company"), a world leader in sustainable waste and energy solutions, reported financial results today for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2021.


Key Highlights

  • Adjusted EBITDA up $41 million year-over-year
  • Waste-to-energy tip fee price growth of 4.5% year-over-year
  • Capturing materially higher prices for energy and recycled metals
  • UK construction and commissioning activities on track
  • EQT transaction received shareholder approval on October 12, and is expected to close by end of year,
    subject to final regulatory approvals
“Our team continues to execute extremely well, with consistent operating performance positioning the Company to maximize revenue in a strong market environment that includes upward pressure on disposal prices, growing demand for sustainable waste solutions, and higher values for the commodities we generate,” said Michael Ranger, President and CEO. “While we work toward closing our transaction with EQT and preparing for the Company's next chapter, we remain focused on our customers and communities, operating safely and efficiently, and leveraging the unique value of our assets.”

Discussion of Third Quarter 2021 Results

Total revenue for the three months ended September 30, 2021 was $539 million, up $48 million as compared to the prior year period, driven by the following:

  • Waste revenue improved by $20 million, with growth in nearly all areas, including:
    • Tip fees up $16 million on higher prices and volumes; and
    • Material processing and recycling revenue up $7 million amid strong recovery in demand
      for environmental services;
  • Energy revenue increased by $11 million due to higher market prices and increased revenue from
    renewable energy credits, partially offset by lower wholesale load serving revenue; and
  • Materials sales increased by $21 million, with a $15 million increase in ferrous revenue and a $6
    million increase in non-ferrous revenue due to higher market prices for metal products.

Total operating expenses were $465 million in the quarter, up $24 million over the prior year period, driven by the following:

  • Wages and benefits rose by $9 million, with normalized compensation costs compared to COVID related cost mitigation actions taken in the third quarter of 2020 and higher accruals for incentive
    compensation based on financial performance;
  • Maintenance expense decreased by $7 million due to the timing of planned outage activity;
  • Other operating costs increased by $5 million primarily related to higher insurance premiums,
    transportation and fuel costs; and
  • General and administrative expense rose by $9 million, with the cost mitigation actions taken in
    the prior year period and increased costs relating to the strategic review impacting the comparison.

Adjusted EBITDA increased by $41 million to $169 million, driven primarily by higher waste and commodity prices and lower maintenance expense, partially offset by higher costs compared to the prior year cost mitigation program.

Free Cash Flow was $60 million in the quarter, up $58 million compared to the prior year. This improvement was driven primarily by higher Adjusted EBITDA and reduced maintenance capital expenditures.

The Company ended the quarter with $2.4 billion of net debt outstanding and a leverage ratio of 5.2x.

About Covanta

Covanta is a world leader in providing sustainable waste and energy solutions. Annually, Covanta’s modern Waste-to-Energy ("WtE") facilities safely convert approximately 21 million tons of waste from municipalities and businesses into clean, renewable electricity to power one million homes and recycle 600,000 tons of metal. Through a vast network of treatment and recycling facilities, Covanta also provides comprehensive industrial material management services to companies seeking solutions to some of today’s most complex environmental challenges. For more information, visit

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this press release may constitute "forward-looking" statements as defined in Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 (the "Securities Act"), Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the "Exchange Act"), the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the "PSLRA") or in releases made by the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), all as may be amended from time to time. Forward-looking statements are those that address activities, events or developments that we or our management intend, expect, project, believe or anticipate will or may occur in the future. They are based on management’s assumptions and assessments in light of past experience and trends, current economic and industry conditions, expected future developments and other relevant factors. They are not guarantees of future performance or actual results. Developments and business decisions may differ from those envisaged by our forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, statements with respect to the consummation of the transaction with EQT, involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Covanta Holding Corporation (“Covanta”), its subsidiaries and joint ventures or industry results, to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, in particular, the announced business combination with EQT depends on the satisfaction of the closing conditions to the business combination, and there can be no assurance as to whether or when the business combination will be consummated. For additional information see the Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements in the Company's 2020 Annual Report on Form 10-K as well as Risk Factors in the Company’s most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended September 30, 2021.

Investor Contact
Dan Mannes

Media Contact
Nicolle Robles

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