“Fundació Fòrum Ambiental and Atos Origin complete White Paper on IT and Industrial Waste Management in Spain”

Barcelona, 2 May 2006

The Fundació Fòrum Ambiental and Atos Origin, an international IT services company, have completed a white paper that examines the use of technology in the industrial waste sector. The study, which has been carried out over the last nine months, was completed with the collaboration and support of the Regional Authorities (called Autonomous Communities in Spain) of Cantabria, Catalonia, La Rioja and the Basque Country, as well as the companies SAP España, Fundación Tradebe and Medio Ambiente, Agua, Residuos y Energía de Cantabria (MARE).

A European Commission Regulation (Number 782/2005), which has been in force since May 2005, obliges EU Member States to share and transmit electronically statistical information on waste management according to Regulation (EC) Number 2150/2002. This report is designed to establish whether Spain is ready for this challenge and whether the Ministry of the Environment has a database that is of the quality and reliability required for such a project.

In Spain, the management of industrial waste has been transferred to Regional Governments that work with information providers, waste producers, managers and transport companies to gather information and monitor the transfer, sorting, treatment and disposal of waste.

The study, based on questionnaires completed by the Autonomous Communities, Producers, Managers and Transport Companies involved in industrial waste management, reveal as conclusive results:

  • Catalonia is the Autonomous Community which generates the most dangerous waste per year in Spain (600,000 tonnes/year). It is followed by the Basque country (with more than 300,000 tonnes/year), the Valencian Community and Andalucia (with almost 300,000 tonnes/year) and Castile and Leon (with 200,000 tonnes/year).

  • Even so, Catalonia and the Basque Country are the Autonomous Communities best equipped to manage and deal with industrial waste with information technologies.
  • In terms of total volume of waste, the Community of Madrid and Castile-La Mancha give rise to concern.
  • As far as sectors are concerned, the manufacturing industry stands out as the economic activity which produces the most waste (more than 25,000,000 tonnes/year, of which 2,000,000 are dangerous materials).
  • There are no online electronic processing services being used to meet regulations in most Autonomous Communities.
  • The majority of Autonomous Communities do not have services or standards of electronic communication to cope with the problem.
  • There is no standardization between the existing online services or collaboration between the Autonomous Communities to remedy this problem.
  • There is very low usage of any existing services, particularly for the high volume transactions such as Control and Monitoring Documents (DCS).

According to Carles Mendieta, director of Fundació Fòrum Ambiental, “The study shows that information technology has become essential for improving the sustainability of our current economic model. It is urgent and necessary for all the Autonomous Communities, and indeed all those working in the environmental system, to harmonise their systems and share their know-how so that they can help one another. Only by doing so can all the players of the sector manage and budget better for their environmental costs. The White Paper we have drawn up is a first step towards achieving this.

Meanwhile, Ramón Grau, Industry Business Manager at Atos Origin said: “By analysing the results we can think about how to improve information flow between the various players in the waste management sector. Only by doing this can the environmental future of industry in Spain be assured. The major effort put into producing this initial document must be continued, especially by the Spanish regions.

The findings of the report recommend the creation of packages of information that share the same structure across all autonomous communities and can be easily and regularly forwarded to the Ministry of the Environment.
The study not only highlights the current deadlock situation but also proposes an action plan that can be implemented immediately and simply, through collaboration between public and private organizations, to bring about change.

The White Paper provides a response to the latent necessities of the different Administrations as well as of the producers, transport companies and industrial waste management companies, which have to adapt to ever more demanding legislation, in particular that promoted by the EU. It is an inventory of the information technologies used in the business sector and State Administration and, at the same time, a proposal to harmonise criteria with a view to creating a single information highway common to all of Spain's autonomous communities.

About Fundació Forum Ambiental
Fundació Fòrum Ambiental is a non-profit organisation, the aim of which is to create a platform for dialogue and cooperation between companies, public authorities and the public, in order to produce and jointly apply a sustainable development model.
It works in three main areas: Information and education, carrying out projects and supporting training and research programmes. The aim of these work areas is as follows: Making environmental awareness part of business culture, educating society that sustainable business growth and protecting the quality of the environment are compatible aims and developing and protecting a home-grown environmental business sector.

About Atos Origin
Atos Origin is an international information technology services company. Its business is turning client vision into results through the application of consulting, systems integration and managed operations. The company's annual revenues are EUR 5.5 billion and it employs over 47,000 people in 40 countries. Atos Origin is the Worldwide Information Technology Partner for the Olympic Games and has a client base of international blue-chip companies across all sectors. Atos Origin is quoted on the Paris Eurolist Market and trades as Atos Origin, Atos Euronext Market Solutions, Atos Worldline and Atos Consulting.

For more information:

Fundació Fòrum Ambiental
Lydia Ruiz
Tel: +34 93 285 19 19
lydia@mapadvisers.com
www.forumambiental.org
Atos Origin Spain
Antonio Ferreiro
Tel. + 34 91 440 88 00
antonio.ferreiro@atosorigin.com