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  • Dear Readers!

    Once again the world’s largest trade fair for the water, sewage, waste and raw materials sectors has opened its gates in Munich. As in previous years, hundreds of thousands of specialists from all around the globe are expected to attend the exhibition centre in the capital city of Bavaria this year. And once again, focus will be put on modern environmental technologies which aim to increase global recycling rates and make our planet more sustainable – and rightly so. We at REMONDIS love recycling and are doing everything that is economically viable and technologically possible to promote sustainability. However, no matter what recycling efforts are made, there is still that undeniable truth which people often prefer to ignore: at the end, there are always some materials left over. Each time residual and hazardous waste is thermally treated, it generates slag; each time a road is dug up or a building demolished, it produces mineral waste and construction waste. And after all possible substances have been sent for materials or thermal recycling, the question remains ‘what to do with the residue that cannot be recycled?’ The subject of sending waste to landfill appeared to have been taken care of in Germany when the ‘TaSi’ (Technical Directive on the Recycling, Treatment and Disposal of Municipal Waste) came into force in 2005. We are, therefore, now rubbing our eyes in disbelief as it becomes clear that a lack of landfill space – a problem believed to be something of the distant past – is, slowly but surely, threatening to catch up with us again. The City of Kaiserslautern has understood what is happening and has entered into a public private partnership with REMONDIS’ subsidiary, REMEX, to build a new landfill that will be able to accept 400,000 tonnes of mineral waste each year. This, too, is something that must be done for the future of the country.

    Some years ago, Prof. Klaus Töpfer, former Federal Minister of the Environment, introduced the so-called ‘dual system’ to take the pressure off household waste landfills and to push forward the country’s recycling activities. The recycling bin (known as the yellow bin in Germany because of its yellow lid) enabled recyclable and residual waste to be collected separately from households and proved to be a success for many years. Indeed, this concept was exported to many other countries. This system is now in danger of collapsing as a result of its own loopholes. Projected volumes of correctly licensed sales packaging will fall this year to just 812,000 tonnes, a 26 percent drop compared to last year, whilst the amount of waste sales packaging actually collected will remain the same at around 2.2 million tonnes. The honest system operators are having to bear this financial ‘gap’ and no-one is able to say how long it can survive. In this issue of REMONDIS aktuell, we look more closely at the question of whether the recycling bin has a future or whether it has finally reached the end of the line.

    No matter what the future brings, waste and raw materials will still have to be transported from A to B. Looking at the growing shortage of qualified truck drivers in Germany, however, this may soon be more easily said than done. Fewer and fewer young people are choosing to join this profession which is so important for road logistics. REMONDIS has taken action to counteract this trend and is offering more apprenticeship jobs in this area. The job of a truck driver is so much better than its image. The apprenticeship course offers much more than simply learning to drive a truck – it also teaches all about vehicle technology, infrastructure, logistics and mobility.

    As always, I hope you enjoy reading this edition of REMONDIS aktuell.

    Ludger Rethmann 

Four reasons for rejoicing

Our economy would not be able to function without the many sales people who are on the road every day in order to stay in close contact with their customers. Gudrun Rodday, Sabine Sommer, Christian Decker and Martin Pawelczik were recently named the most successful sales employees of 2013 and have now been honoured by REMONDIS Board Member, Thomas Conzendorf.

These four success stories clearly show just how important it is to have direct contact with customers.

Gudrun Rodday – a reliable contact person for many years now

Gudrun Rodday has a degree in chemical engineering and is a mother of three. For a while, she had an office position in the sales department to be able to manage her family and job commitments but over time she wished to be closer to her customers again.

”I am a naturally curious person and I’m always asking myself what the customers at the end of the phone wish to get rid of and how we can best help them. To be able to that, though, you have to go to where the waste is being generated, i.e. to the customers.”

Today, Gudrun Rodday works at REMONDIS as a key account manager and is the contact person for the company’s customers from the chemicals industry and other sectors. ”I really appreciate the trust the customers put in me and enjoy our mutual success for which I am very grateful.”

Sabine Sommer – enjoying work and being a success

Sabine Sommer entered the recycling sector after finishing high school and completing an apprenticeship to become a chemical laboratory assistant. Having held a number of positions at various waste management firms, she successfully took part in a management trainee programme at a company of the former RWE-Umwelt Group before joining REMONDIS. Today, Sabine Sommer is responsible for supporting key customers, in particular in the area of hazardous waste, a job she really enjoys. The many things she has experienced during her 20 years of working in sales could fill books but she is happiest when she is on site at her customers’. Her motto:

”Carpe diem – I love life and sales is fun. The perfect recipe for success.”

Christian Decker – from a car mechanic to key account manager

Christian Decker is 28 years old and so has not been working quite as long but he has become one of the most successful sales employees at REMONDIS within a very short period of time. Interested in both technology and people, he first completed an apprenticeship to become a car mechanic before studying mechanical engineering at the (FH) University of Gießen. Fortunately for REMONDIS, he decided to move to Trier where he began working in sales in 2011. 

”Having looked through REMONDIS’ website, I knew that I wanted to work there.”

Since 01 January 2013, Christian Decker has held the position of key account manager focusing on acquiring new customers and providing existing key customers with the support they need, in particular for building and industrial projects.

Martin Pawelczyk – heading upwards with and at REMONDIS

Martin Pawelczyk joined REMONDIS after finishing school and doing an apprenticeship to become an industrial clerk. He then completed a degree course in Economics studying part time alongside his job. Having held a number of office jobs in the sales department at REMONDIS Rhein-Wupper in Düsseldorf, he then became a member of the fieldwork team in 2011 where he was responsible for visiting customers from the worlds of industry, trade and commerce. Since 2013, he has become increasingly involved in the area of key account management. Martin Pawelczik really enjoys his work at REMONDIS:

”I meet new and interesting people every day and no two days are ever the same.” 

One of the secrets behind his success is working one to one with other people. REMONDIS wishes all four winners continued success and fun in their work with and for their customers.

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