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  • Dear Readers!

    In Germany super election year 2017 is well underway. The Saarland election has already taken place, with Schleswig-Holstein and the most populous of the German Länder, North Rhine-Westphalia, set to follow in May. General elections for the Bundestag will then be taking place in September. In these times of populism and fake news, this election will play a pivotal role. Germany has the strongest economy and largest population in Europe. The outcome of the election will have repercussions for all of Europe and influence economic and political relations with other countries around the world. In view of the dimensions involved, a key topic unfortunately often takes back seat: recycling and its importance to climate and environmental policy. We wanted to size things up accurately and enquired with all the major political party groups about their platforms concerning environmental policy in the upcoming legislative period and beyond. You will find a summary of the responses in this issue’s feature article and the complete responses online at remondis-aktuell.de. Whether elections turn out to be good for the climate and the environment in general and our growth sector in particular will ultimately be decided by hopefully well informed, active citizens.

    Some legislative bills have been initiated shortly before the elections – for example, the new Commercial Waste Regulation (Gewerbeabfallverordnung). It will involve important changes that have a major impact on our commercial customers when the new regulation goes into effect on 1 August 2017 at the latest. Under the new version, companies producing waste in connection with housing construction will be obligated to separately collect the waste items of paper, cardboard and pasteboard with the exception of hygienic paper, glass, plastics, metals, wood, textiles, organic waste and additional commercial and industrial waste already where it comes about, i.e. at companies themselves. The same goes for construction and demolition waste, which is already to be separated at the building site into the various waste categories such as glass, plastics, metals, wood, insulation material, bituminous mixtures, building material based on gypsum, concrete, bricks, tiles and ceramics. This is no doubt good news for improved recovery of raw materials, but it also means greater expenses for customers, who ­REMONDIS will support professionally as accustomed with practicable services in line with laws and regulations. 

    And how do things stand at present when it comes to refugee policy? The number of new persons seeking asylum arriving in Germany has dropped significantly. The biggest challenge now is to successfully integrate these people in our society and the German world of work. ­REMONDIS is taking on this challenge, hiring young people as well as persons with work experience in various fields who have lost their home as a result of war, famine and displacement and now want to venture a new beginning in their adopted country of Germany. A real win-win situation, as a successful start to a vocational career is the best contribution that can be made to a society living together in prosperity and peace. Here as well, ­REMONDIS meets its responsibility to society as a whole, acting in the spirt of its own slogan: working for the future!

    Yours

    Thomas Conzendorf

Refugee children given a warm welcome

  • LWG Lausitzer Wasser GmbH & Co. KG had some very special guests recently. 20 refugee children aged 12 to 16 visited the teaching workshop Am Großen Spreewehr 6 upon the instigation of Georg Schneider.

Learning for the future

“At the school we convey basic knowledge to children in German and other subjects and prepare them to be able to learn in a regular school class after about half a year,” reports the teacher at the vocationally-oriented Gutenberg-Oberschule Forst. But it is equally important in his opinion to interest children in vocations now that will some day help rebuild their home country. “A stable supply of drinking water is one of the most important things that has to be guaranteed everywhere,” comments Georg Schneider. “And because LWG trains machine mechanics to this end it appeared only logical to acquaint children with these skills.”

  • “That is why it would be good if our government funded vocational training of refugees so that they can later return to their home countries as well-trained specialists.“

    Georg Schneider

Getting some hands-on experience

Girls and boys from Syria, Afghanistan, the Congo and Chechnya visibly thought it was fun to stand at a workbench themselves. Under the tutelage of LWG instructors Jörg Lange and Marten Schneider, they practiced filing for the first time in their lives, quickly finding out that it looks easier than it is.

Apprentices welcome

Nevertheless, Georg Schneider hopes that they will also enjoy this practical work over the long term and that they will above all receive the possibility to learn a profession after finishing school in Germany. “We probably have the best vocational education system in the world here in our country,” observes Georg Schneider, who has already entered into retirement. “That is why it would be good if our government funded vocational training of refugees so that they can later return to their home countries as well-trained specialists.” At any rate, there is room for additional apprenticeships at LWG Lausitzer Wasser GmbH & Co. KG.

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