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  • Dear Readers!

    “We are made wise not by the recollection of our past but by the responsibility for our future.” This piece of wisdom was uttered by the great Irish author George Bernard Shaw and it would certainly appear to be true looking at the challenges that humans are having to face today: the need to protect the environment and prevent climate change, to supply sufficient quantities of food and raw materials but to conserve our planet’s natural resources at the same time. Taking on responsibility for the future means nothing less than acting and doing business in a responsible way today so that future generations have a world that they are able to live in. Being a family-run company that is committed to sustainability in each and every sector it operates in, this is exactly what we intend to do. We have, therefore, added a new slogan to reflect this mission:
    From now on, the REMONDIS logo will appear together with the strapline ‘Working for the future’. This is not some empty promise: every day, the 30,000+ people working for REMONDIS prove this is the case by collecting, sorting and processing recyclables, by ensuring our soils are clean and full of nutrients, by supplying water and treating wastewater, by generating sustainable biogas and energy and by carrying out joint public-private sector work to keep cities clean and roads safe. REMONDIS is, therefore, working for the future right now so that our children and their descendants have urban areas and indeed a planet that are worth living in. The present gives us the opportunity to change – and change is definitely what is needed if we wish to shape the future.

    One example in the Netherlands clearly shows that our neighbours are also thinking of the future. When a Dutch municipal company sells all its commercial activities to REMONDIS, it is certainly worth asking why they decided to do this. In an interview with REMONDIS aktuell, ROVA managing director Hans Groenhuis explains how European public procurement law determines whether a company can be awarded an “in-house contract” and why it is advisable for local authorities throughout Europe to think about giving up their commercial activities altogether.

    Just how satisfied are our public sector customers and what can REMONDIS do to further improve the way it supports local authorities to provide public services? We wanted to hear details here and so we asked them. The results of the customer survey, which was carried out by an independent institute on behalf of REMONDIS, are both encouraging and an incentive at the same time. It is certainly good news when not only our regular customers express their great satisfaction with the company but also the overwhelming majority of our past customers who could well imagine working together with REMONDIS again in the future. We will not, however, be sitting back on our laurels. There is always room for improvement when it comes to serving local inhabitants. REMONDIS will be doing everything in its power to optimise its portfolio and to provide both its contractual partners and those receiving its services with the best possible solutions at fair and favourable conditions. Working for people. Working for the future. 

    I hope you enjoy reading this edition of REMONDIS aktuell.

    Thomas Conzendorf 

Obligatory EU standards

  • Poland has been a member of the European Union for just under a decade now. The country, the largest among the new member states, must, therefore, now comply with the EU’s rules concerning recycling. Implementation of these standards, however, has at times been slow. New laws have been passed to speed up this process.

New laws mean big changes

  • There’s no doubt about it: a lot of things have changed in Poland over the last few years. Despite this fact, however, the country is still quite a way behind when it comes to recycling. With the European Commission threatening to impose sanctions, the Polish government has passed a number of new laws to change the situation. The first step occurred two years ago when the law on “cleanliness and order in local authority districts” came into force. The result was a complete reorganisation of the municipal waste business – effectively putting it into the hands of the public sector. Before this law came into being, local inhabitants and commercial businesses could choose who should collect their waste. Municipal waste is now under the control of the respective local authorities.  

    The next new regulation was passed soon after. The reason behind this move was the need to transpose the EU Waste Framework Directive into national law – something that should, in fact, have happened by the end of 2010. These regulations came into effect in the middle of 2013. They strengthened the position of local authorities – as the owner of all materials generated by households – and set the path for making it obligatory for local inhabitants to segregate their recyclables. 

    Around 12 million tonnes of municipal waste are generated in Poland each year, a good two thirds of which come from private households.

    All across the country, these two new laws have led to projects being put out to tender, some of which have not yet been completed. This all costs time, creates an atmosphere of uncertainty and has resulted in projects, that have already started and/or been planned, progressing much more slowly than anticipated or turning out to be a bad investment.

Ambitious goals require modern technology


  • According to official statistics, around 14 percent of municipal waste is recycled in Poland. Recycling rates for glass, paper, metal and plastics should have reached at least 50 percent by 2020. If this goal is to be achieved, the country needs to have an infrastructure in place that includes a comprehensive, nationwide collection system for segregated waste and high performance facilities to process these materials. It would be easier to finance, plan and achieve this with the support of the private sector.

An effective network of business locations

  • REMONDIS has been operating in Poland since the beginning of the 90s – both in public private partnerships and on its own account. Being the market leader there, the company has branches in 42 towns and a network of 25 sorting plants as well as further facilities for special material flows or to produce substitute fuels. Each year, REMONDIS collects almost 1.5 million tonnes of waste and recyclables from all around the country. As part of its everyday work, the company provides state-of-the-art collection logistics, a wide range of services and nationwide systems. 

    REMONDIS operates in both the recycling and water sectors in Poland.

Investments with a secure basis

  • REMONDIS has been a reliable partner in the Polish waste management sector since 1990

    REMONDIS has business locations in all Polish regions, one of which is located in Gliwice, an economic centre with almost 20,000 local inhabitants. The company operates here via REMONDIS Gliwice Sp.zo.o., a joint venture in which the City of Gliwice owns a 20 percent share. The PPP company specialises in collecting and processing recyclables, managing municipal waste, providing container services and keeping roads clean and free of snow and ice in winter. This branch was able to extend its catchment area during the first round of tenders following the new laws by winning additional contracts in the towns and districts around Gliwice. Moreover, REMONDIS Gliwice has founded a joint venture with the local landfill which will now be investing in a new joint mechanical biological treatment facility. The local authorities involved will, therefore, be able to get closer to their recycling targets and ensure they meet the required legal standards. As far as REMONDIS is concerned, this means that the right conditions are in place for it to continue its investments. Its range of services will, therefore, be extended in 2014 – with new opportunities to process and treat recyclables and construction waste.

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