FLI Environmental Wins Major Contract in Mongolia’s Gobi Desert

Waterford-based FLI Environmental, a global and diversified environmental services company, has secured a Eur1.6 million contract to construct the Maiga Mountain Reservoir in the province of Umnogabi in Mongolia.

Already a four-strong team from Tramore and Waterford, consisting of an FLI project manager and three technicians, has been dispatched to begin construction of two reservoirs with insulated floating covers for Energy Resources LLC at its new coal mine, located in one of the physically toughest environments in the world. The Irish team will be supported by locally-hired employees.

The 30,000 square meters of reservoir will hold clean water needed in the new coal mine and will have an insulated floating cover of 38,000 square metres to keep out debris and dust swirling in from the Gobi desert.

Michael Flynn, who founded FLI in 1989, says approximately three-quarters of the company’s Eur50 million annual turnover is now accounted for by projects outside of Ireland.

“Working in places like Outer Mongolia is nothing new to FLI,” he says. “Since 2006 we have, for instance, been working on the South Pacific Island of New Caledonia, five hours flying time east of Mongolia. FLI France is currently carrying out projects in Guadeloupe, Martinique and Reunion Island, in the Caribbean.”

Now that the Mongoliane project has been won, FLI faces further challenges in delivering the project. With summer temperatures of up to 40 C and wind speeds of 16 metres per second, FLI has to finish the work before winter sets in when temperatures drop to minus 35 C.

FLI Environmental is headquartered at The Six Cross Roads Business Park, Waterford. Since it was established in 1989, the company has diversified from its original geosynthetic lining operation to include waste water treatment, contaminated land remediation and energy-from-waste facilities. With 200 permanent employees it now has six bases in the UK, and a base in France, as well as in New Caledonia. A number of companies in these countries were strategically acquired to facilitate the growth of the business in the broad environmental services sector.


FLI founder, Michael Flynn, with Philip Galvin, FLI’s senior project manager in charge of international projects. (Photo: Dylan Vaughan).

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