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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

New employees welcomed by the mayor & plant manager

  • The contract regulating the management of the technical operations at the waterworks owned by the Dierdorf local authority association has been in place since 01 July 2016. Horst Rasbach, mayor of the Dierdorf local authority association, and Eberhard Leukel, plant manager, welcomed REMONDIS EURAWASSER’s employees and managing director Torsten Ohlert to the water tower in Dierdorf.

A wide range of services

The Dierdorf local authority association currently consists of six local councils situated right in the heart of the Rhine-Westerwald nature preserve (District of Neuwied) close to the A3 motorway. “Having completed the tender process and awarded the contract to REMONDIS EURAWASSER, we know that we are working with experts. We will be able to use the company’s experience and know-how to ensure that our local inhabitants will continue to receive a reliable supply of high quality water,” commented Mayor Horst Rasbach.

A new public private partnership (PPP) was established on 01 July 2016 which is now responsible for performing a wide range of tasks. Besides operating the plants for extracting and processing the region’s drinking water, it must also maintain the 153 kilometres of drinking water pipes, the pumping stations and all the other plants and technology needed to guarantee the supply of water to the 10,000+ local residents. Moreover, REMONDIS will also be supporting the local authority association to develop more efficient and decentralised ways to fulfil their municipal tasks.

The first step: winning the Europe-wide tender

  • REMONDIS EURAWASSER, which is based in the German town of Grafschaft, took part in and won the Europe-wide tender. “We wish to work together closely with the Dierdorf local authority association’s own company and make the very most of our know-how to further develop the systems being used to supply drinking water in the district,” explained Torsten Ohlert. REMONDIS EURAWASSER is now responsible for managing the technical operations that had previously been carried out by the local authority association’s own company. All official tasks and duties remain in the hands of the local council.

    • Now working hand in hand: the Mayor of Dierdorf, Horst Rasbach, (left) and the EURAWASSER team with managing director, Torsten Ohlert (right)

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