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  • Dear Readers!

    Even after just a few months, 2019 is already panning out to be a year full of uncertainty. We are all having to face a variety of challenges. With many of these linked to climate change and the environment, they are automatically affecting the environmental services sector as well. The impact of climate change could be felt all around the world last year with countries being struck by floods, forest fires and drought – and experts are expecting more of the same this year. Both industrial and political decision-makers and consumers across the globe are well aware that urgent measures need to be taken to reduce greenhouse gas emissions – something that has been further highlighted by the young Swedish environmental activist, Greta Thunberg, who has inspired schoolchildren to take to the streets on Fridays to get adults to finally tackle this problem. This will be a mammoth task as it involves nothing less than halting the loss of biodiversity and ensuring there are sufficient supplies of natural resources for future generations. And this is precisely what REMONDIS does by recovering high quality raw materials from waste. Indeed, there is no other individual measure that is so successful at cutting greenhouse gas emissions and conserving natural resources. And this is why we see it as our task to extend the reach of our services and pass on our know-how to others – especially to other countries – to promote resource-friendly recycling activities.

    Our industry is currently undergoing a technological change that will alter the way many things are done. As the world becomes ever more digital, it is inevitable that this technology will have an impact on our everyday lives as well as on the way we do business. The spread of digitisation, however, is creating its own new set of challenges. The political environment in many regions around the world is also changing which could hamper our cross-border efforts to promote sustainable development. This, of course, also includes the uncertainty surrounding Brexit and the growing tensions between the so-called superpowers. We need the support of our politicians so that we can make the world that little bit more sustainable – whether it be the implementation of a Europe-wide landfill ban or the creation of an Ecodesign Directive that takes raw material efficiency into account as well as energy efficiency. All in all, the upcoming European Elections will be an important political milestone for Europe.

    REMONDIS is doing its utmost to turn these challenges into opportunities and to navigate through these stormy seas safely. We are marking out the way for sustainable success by investing in technology and growing our portfolio.

    You can find out more about our plans for the future by taking a look through this latest issue of REMONDIS AKTUELL – and discover how our customers can benefit from our strong and stable services in these volatile times. 

    Yours

    Egbert Tölle

Many have questions about segregating recyclables

  • Should drinks cartons be put into the paper bin or the recycling bin? What should I do with my jam jar lids? Many Germans are still not sure how best to separate their recyclables. NABU [German Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union] has now set up an online search platform giving information about local waste advice centres so that people do not have to search the internet for hours on end or – even worse – throw their waste into the wrong bin.

Search results according to postcodes or towns

The results of the search engine are based on the data collected by NABU. Users can enter their postcode or home town to find out who is responsible for giving advice in their region and what options are available to them there to reduce and separate their waste. Over 500 waste advice centres run by local authorities and recycling companies across the country can currently be found on the platform. “Humans continue to be the most intelligent sorters. The way they separate their recyclables plays a crucial role in conserving natural resources and enabling valuable raw materials to be recovered for reuse,” stressed Herwart Wilms, a managing director at REMONDIS, who is all in favour of this latest online search platform. “It’s very important that local inhabitants have someone they can turn to so that they separate their waste correctly,” Herwart Wilms concluded.

The goal: to avoid contamination

Both local authorities and recycling companies are obliged by law to make it as easy as possible for local inhabitants to separate their recyclables as well as to encourage them to reduce the amount of waste they produce so that valuable reusable materials do not end up in the residual waste bin. The options available to local residents however differ greatly from region to region: “Not everyone in Germany has access to waste advice at the moment. On the one hand, there are regions with some really interesting offers, such as crockery hire services and second-hand shops, while on the other, there are councils and firms that simply provide information about fees and bins. Things really need to change here,” explained Verena Bax, NABU resource expert, who was involved in developing this online search platform.

  • “Humans continue to be the most intelligent sorters. The way they separate their recyclables plays a crucial role in conserving natural resources and enabling valuable raw materials to be recovered for reuse.”

    Herwart Wilms, REMONDIS Managing Director

Minimum waste advice standards

If there is to be systematic, high quality recycling across the whole of the country, then both the government in Berlin and the state parliaments must set minimum standards regarding the quality of waste advice that must be given and ensure that waste law is implemented consistently throughout Germany. This must include promoting an exchange of information between the different waste advice centres and introducing uniform waste segregation schemes including the recycling bin. NABU and REMONDIS are very much in agreement here. “Today’s society is consuming an ever increasing amount of to-go, single-use and short life products. Add this to the growing volumes of municipal waste and it becomes clear that effective systems need to be in place to conserve our planet’s natural resources,” Verena Bax said, summing up the situation.

  • Have you got a question about how best to separate your waste? Find out who to contact here

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