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  • Dear Readers!

    There is a political stalemate in Germany at the moment. With four of the six parties elected to Germany’s new Parliament failing to find a compromise so that they can form a government, the country’s political future – at the time we went to print – is more uncertain than ever. A so-called Jamaica coalition, which gets its name from the colours of the different parties: black for the two Conservative coalition partners CDU and CSU, yellow for the Liberals FDP, and green for the Bündnis90/Die Grünen (the colours of the Jamaican flag), would appear to no longer be an option after the parties’ exploratory talks broke down on 19 November. At the same time, the Social Democrats seem to be sticking to their decision not to form another ‘grand coalition’ with their Conservative counterparts. There are certainly some huge political hurdles to overcome. Whilst some would prefer more state control, others are looking to follow a more typically liberal course with greater freedom for businesses. The Green’s desire to speed up the move towards an energy sector without fossil fuels (including shutting down coal-fired power stations and getting rid of internal combustion engines earlier than planned) is proving to be an obstacle for those with more conservative political interests. And, whilst the Liberals are finally fighting to expand digital networks in rural areas, the Conservatives would appear to be merely paying digital lip service to this subject.

    And yet there is no time to lose. The economy is already going through a structural change as a result of the next industrial revolution and this revolution is both digital and electrical. It has come at a time when the world is facing the huge challenges of climate change and a growing number of environmental problems which, in the end, will make it difficult to meet the global population’s needs.

    Even sand – a substance we would seem to be surrounded by – is becoming scarce. And, once again, it is our industry that has come up with a solution. If we are to curb global warming, move away from fossil fuels and conserve our planet’s raw materials, then setting up a genuine circular economy must be at the very centre of a government’s policy. If Germany, a country with so few natural resources of its own, is to remain an important industrial location in the future as supplies of raw materials become ever scarcer, then the spotlight must be turned on recycling. Recycling must be at the forefront of everyone’s minds, especially of product designers. The foundations were created for this when the Packaging Law was introduced during the last legislative period as this lays down product responsibility and market-based measures to promote recycling. What is needed now is to transfer these standards so that they apply to all products.
     
    There is always much to celebrate at the end of the year. REMONDIS is, for example, celebrating sixty years of plastics recycling at RE PLANO and, of course, that you – our custom-ers, friends, partners and employees – have remained loyal to us throughout the year. Together, day by day, we can help make the world that little bit more sustainable.
     
    We would like to thank you for your great support and collab-oration over the last twelve months and wish you a Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and successful New Year.

    Yours

    Ludger Rethmann

Focusing on industrial waste

With environmental awareness continuously growing in the People‘s Republic of China, REMONDIS has gradually been expanding its business commitments in this emerging Asian market. Priority here has been on transferring its know-how and setting up sufficient plant capacities – primarily for industrial waste as well as recycling and end-of-pipe solutions.

Environmental protection is becoming increasingly important

For years now, China’s economy has enjoyed a rate of growth that is far beyond the average. And, even if this growth has lost some of its momentum, the economy is still expanding much faster than in other countries. This development has led to improved living standards across the country which in turn is resulting in an ever increasing number of Chinese people expecting more to be done to protect the environment. For the third time running, therefore, the Chin-ese government has put environmental issues at the top of its list of priorities in its 5-year plan and indicated that it will be investing more money in this area.

In principle, there are two main sectors in China: the public sector (dominated for the most part by the State) and the industrial sector. Since entering the market in 2009, REMONDIS has focused its Chinese operations on providing professional solutions for treating industrial waste. The problem here is that whilst there are sufficient rules and regulations, the infrastructure needed to fulfil them is not in place yet. The country not only has too few recycling facilities, it also lacks hazardous waste incineration plants and landfills.

Providing experience and know-how

Right from the very start, REMONDIS’ intention has been to transfer its know-how to China. The company believes it has two main tasks here. On the one hand, it aims to provide the Government and its representatives with professional advice – for example on modern recycling techniques and the advantages of setting up smart schemes that enable waste to be collected separately. On the other, REMONDIS offers tangible support, planning and building plants and facilities.

With the primary goal being to recycle waste, a number of facilities have already been built by REMONDIS including plants to recycle solvents and to produce refuse derived fuels. Besides these though, the country urgently needs more incineration plants and landfills for handling its non-recyclable waste.

  • Cooperation in a south Chinese industrial region

    The latest project in the City of Foshan is a good example of an end-of-pipe solution. This city in the south of China is home to several million people and is situated not far from Hong Kong and Macao in a vibrant economic region with many industrial businesses. Together with its local partner Grandblue Environment Co. Ltd., REMONDIS is currently in the process of planning and building a hazardous waste centre with an incineration plant, an emulsion treatment facility, a plant for processing electroplating sludge, a tank farm and a hazardous waste landfill. The cooperation agreement was signed by both companies on 13 July in the presence of Li Keqiang, Minister President of the People’s Republic of China, and Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission.

    REMONDIS currently has four business locations in the People‘s Republic of China – in Shanghai, Changchun, Chongqing and Foshan

  • Facilities located in two districts of Foshan

    The project in Foshan covers the development of two sites situated in the districts of Sanshui and Nanhai. REMONDIS’ partner, Grandblue Environment, already operates a landfill for household waste in Sanshui. This site is to be extended to include a further processing plant that will be able to solidify, stabilise and prepare around 30,000 tonnes of industrial waste every year so that it can be sent to landfill.

    Building work is to be carried out in Nanhai to set up the new “Foshan Green Industrial Service Center” which is to operate a variety of facilities including a WIP for household waste, a plant to treat electroplating sludge, a chemical-physical processing plant as well as a waste transfer station. According to the plans, this centre should be able to handle a total of 85,000 tonnes of material every year. Both locations are due to be up and running by the middle of 2019.

    Foshan is home to a large number of industrial businesses operating, for example, in the automobile, chemical, metal, steel and pharmacy sectors

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