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  • Dear Readers!

    The summer break has come to an end and people are gradually returning to work – as are the MPs in Berlin. Once again, environmental politicians are focusing on the subjects of waste management and recycling. The coalition agreement, signed by the Government in 2013, gives great importance to curbing global warming and using our planet’s natural resources efficiently and also expressly states that innovations that protect the environment, prevent climate change and preserve resources are also opportunities for economic growth. Industry specialists are well aware, however, that economic growth and more innovations are only possible if there are clear framework conditions in place that guarantee fair competition, if product responsibility is extended and if recycling targets are raised. The latter, in particular, can only be implemented if the necessary legal framework has been established so that joint kerbside collection schemes for packaging and other recyclables can be set up.

    Unfortunately, the latest draft bill for the new packaging law has failed to deliver what many had been hoping for. What we seem to have here is the eighth amendment to the Packaging Ordinance rather than a genuine recyclables law. Whilst there are a few positive approaches to remedying the current deficiencies, it does not deal with the question of whether waste made of similar materials to packaging should also be collected in recycling bins. The increased recycling targets are well below the volumes that could actually be recovered from household waste. According to the latest studies, an additional 7.8 million tonnes of raw materials could still be collected which in turn would reduce carbon emissions by a further 1.6 million tonnes. Moreover, the need for fair competition and a level playing field between the private and public sector companies has not been tackled in the draft bill either. And there is practically no mention of introducing effective ecodesign guidelines that would force manufacturers to think about how their products could be recycled when actually designing them. We must wait and see whether this draft bill actually becomes law. The private recycling sector believes that a number of improvements need to be made to the bill. Time is running out, however, with the general election coming up next year.

    REMONDIS demonstrates just what can be done with waste and how the very most can be made of these materials to curb climate change and protect the environment – such as at its Lippe Plant in Lünen. The efforts being made by the company here were officially recognised recently when KlimaExpo.NRW (a cross-departmental initiative of the state government of NRW to prevent climate change, conserve resources and achieve sustainable economic growth) added three of the Lippe Plant’s areas of expertise to its list of the twelve best projects in North Rhine-Westphalia. At this site, industrial and household waste is recycled and turned into primary products for industrial businesses, waste and residual materials are transformed into fuels and, last but by no means least, biomass is recycled or used to generate energy. These three areas of expertise alone reduce greenhouse gas emissions by around 416,000 tonnes every year – and are, therefore, getting as close as technically possible to achieving fully closed cycles. The Lippe Plant flagship project is becoming ever more effective. It is high time that this model becomes the norm so that future generations also have a planet worth living on.

    Yours

    Thomas Conzendorf

Growing operations slowly but surely

  • REMONDIS’ Dutch subsidiary is continuing to grow and extend its share of the market. It took a further big step forward when it acquired the commercial waste operations from the municipal company, Avalex. This transaction, which was agreed on at the end of 2015, has paved the way for the company to expand its activities in the Province of South Holland.

REMONDIS acquires Avalex’s commercial business

  • More than 3.6 million people live in South Holland. This means that this is not only the country’s most industrialised region but also the most densely populated. The municipal firm, Avalex, was established in The Hague in 2001.

    It currently handles the waste management operations for six local authorities in South Holland who are also the owners of the company. The firm is intending to focus on household waste in the future. It has sold its commercial activities to REMONDIS, which now wishes to expand these services.

    Jan Hoekema, Mayor of Wassenaar (right), and Dr Andreas Krawczik, Managing Director of REMONDIS Nederland, signing the Avalex contract

At the heart of the operations: the branch in Delft

Besides taking over the services, REMONDIS has also acquired an additional branch in the university town of Delft. This is perfectly located between the two large cities of The Hague and Rotterdam, providing an excellent platform for expanding the business in South Holland. “REMONDIS’ customers in the region can now be served by a local branch,” explained Dr Andreas Krawczik, managing director of REMONDIS Nederland B.V.

Several other Dutch regions had handed over their commercial operations to REMONDIS prior to this contract with Avalex – for example, the municipal companies Twente Milieu and ROVA in the east of the country. REMONDIS’ position on the market in the eastern provinces of Gelderland and Overijssel has also been further strengthened by its takeover of the waste management and recycling group, Dusseldorp.

  • Dutch visitors at REMONDIS’ Lippe Plant

    Günter Gülker, Managing Director of the German Dutch Chamber of Commerce (left), was welcomed by Dr Andreas Krawczik, REMONDIS Nederland B.V.

    REMONDIS wishes to use its expanded business structures to intensify its collaboration work with Dutch local authorities as well as to extend its range of services for both its public and private sector customers. Its focus here is on transparency and transferring know-how.

    Which is why, for example, the DNHK (German Dutch Chamber of Commerce) and more than 60 business people travelled to REMONDIS’ Lippe Plant in Lünen in June to take a closer look at the operations there. The visit – part of the ‘DNHK on the ground’ series of events – enabled the guests to see Europe’s largest industrial recycling centre in action. Thanks to the activities at the plant, greenhouse gas emissions are able to be reduced by up to 466,000 tonnes a year. This is the equivalent to the amount of carbon emissions cut by 25,000 hectares of woodland or by a wind farm operating 80 wind turbines.

    REMONDIS welcomed a further group of visitors from the IKGL (Groenlo-Lichtenvoorde Industrial Circle) who also travelled to Lünen in June. All in all, almost 60 guests from the Dutch Province of Gelderland attended the event. They were first given a presentation about REMONDIS and the Dusseldorp Group before being taken on a tour around the Lippe Plant (ca. 230 hectares).

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