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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.
    Yours

    Ludger Rethmann 

Continuously extending service portfolio

  • The cooperation work between the City of Goslar and EURAWASSER Betriebsführungsgesellschaft mbH, a company belonging to REMONDIS Aqua, demonstrates perfectly just how successful public private partnerships can be in the water management sector. Over the last 18 years, this Goslar-based firm has become one of the leading providers of environmental services in the Harz region. Over this period, it has gradually extended is range of services which, in turn, has led to an increase in the size of its workforce, namely from 25 to its current 64 employees.

Profitable cooperation work

    • This success story began back in February 1996 when EURAWASSER Betriebsfu?hrungsgesellschaft mbH won a Europe-wide tender and founded the joint venture, Stadtentwässerung Goslar GmbH, with the City of Goslar in the German state of Lower Saxony to provide wastewater management and treatment services. The city owns a 51 percent share in this joint venture and EURAWASSER a 49 percent share.

      ‘Lower Saxony Day’ 2013: the stage in front of the historic Kaiserworth Guildhall

    Under the terms of the cooperation agreement, Stadtentwässerung Goslar GmbH transferred all commercial and technical management responsibilities to EURAWASSER Betriebsführungsgesellschaft mbH, which has been in charge of the central sewage treatment plant and the 439km long sewer network since then. Stadtentwässerung Goslar GmbH is the actual owner of the facilities and is also responsible for any investments and financing of such investments. Extensive building projects were carried out at the end of the 90s – such as centralising the wastewater treatment activities and building a third treatment stage at the central sewage treatment plant – which not only considerably improved the results of the treatment processes but also had a positive effect on costs. Over the last 18 years, further investments have been made to improve the pipe network as well as to build up a modern fleet of vehicles so that EURAWASSER can react quickly if there is a problem with the sewer system.

A strong partnership for 18 years now: EURAWASSER and the City of Goslar

More than just water management

      In Goslar, we clean approx. 193km of roads as well as cycle paths, intersections, car parks and other special structures

    • The expertise of the REMONDIS Aqua Group is not, however, limited to water management and this can be seen by the fact that its contractual partners have transferred other public services to the company besides its core business. In 2003, for example, EURAWASSER participated in and won another Europe-wide tender put out by the City of Goslar and has been responsible for cleaning the city’s streets and providing a number of winter services since then. Together with EURAWASSER, Stadtentwässerung Goslar 

    GmbH has access to state-of-the-art vehicles and machines for cleaning streets, paths and other areas and is, as a result, able to provide top quality services. EURAWASSER Betriebsfu?hrungsgesellschaft mbH not only has contracts with the City of Goslar but also with the district of Kreiensen (part of the town of Einbeck) in the state of Lower Saxony and the districts of Stapelburg and Abbenrode (part of the North Harz municipality) in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. All in all, therefore, the company operates over 600 kilometres of wastewater pipes, numerous pump stations and flood control structures as well as three sewage treatment plants. Furthermore, EURAWASSER Betriebsfu?hrungsgesellschaft mbH also works for many different commercial and industrial businesses providing them with services such as cleaning their wastewater pipes, car parks, grassed areas and paths in the summer and winter.

Well developed quality management systems

No matter who it has a contract with, EURAWASSER Betriebsfu?hrungsgesellschaft mbH always sees itself as being a partner. ”Transparency and partnership are very important for the way we work. Top priority is always put on providing a reliable and high quality service,” stressed Holger Fricke, managing director of the company which now has very strong ties to the region. In order to ensure the company’s own quality expectations are met at all times, it introduced a quality management system in accordance with DIN EN ISO 9001 in 2004 and had it assessed by the accreditation body DEKRA. Whilst implementing an integrated management system, the company was awarded further accreditations in 2010: in the areas of health and safety at work (BS OHSAS 18001:2007) and environmental management (DIN EN ISO 14001:2004). The last re-accreditation process for these three areas was completed at the end of October 2013. By using external assessors to check its various processes and by carrying out its own regular in-house checks, the company is looking to make sure that its customers always receive a safe, environmentally friendly and high quality service.

  • ”Transparency and partnership are very important for the way we work. Top priority is always put on providing a reliable and high quality service.”

    stressed Holger Fricke, managing director of the company which now has very strong ties to the region.

Numerous improvements

  • EURAWASSER Betriebsführungsgesellschaft places great importance on finding ways to further improve its customer services. This was the reason why it decided to move is head office from the central sewage treatment plant to the edge of the historical town centre of Goslar in the spring of 2013. Moreover, this move created additional space for the sales staff working in REMONDIS Aqua’s industrial water management division who have now joined the EURAWASSER team at the new premises (Odermarkplatz 1).

    Official opening of the new premises: Mayor Dr Oliver Junk, Holger Fricke, Dr Martin Lebek, Armin Kalbe (from left to right)

    Dr Martin Lebek, a managing director of EURAWASSER Betriebsführungsgesellschaft, is responsible for the portfolio of services for industrial customers there as well as for R&D projects within the REMONDIS Aqua Group. The new premises were officially opened on 01 March 2013 with many guests attending the event. The Mayor of Goslar, Dr Oliver Junk, the Chairman of the supervisory board of Stadtentwässerung Goslar GmbH, Armin Kalbe, and the Chairman of the supervisory board of Wasserver- und Entsorgungsgesellschaft Kreiensen mbH, Bernd Huwald, all congratulated the EURAWASSER managing directors in Goslar on their choice of location. One year on, Holger Fricke concluded: ”We have had a very positive reaction from our customers. Our staff also very much enjoy working in these employeefriendly offices.”

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