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FCC cleans more than 1,200 km of Spanish coast

28/08/2009

FCC cleans more than 1,200 km of Spanish coast

  • It will collect more than 107 tonnes of floating debris at 541 beaches

By summer's end, FCC expects to have collected more than 107,000 kg of solid floating debris along 1,200 km of Spanish coastline, specifically in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands and Guipuzcoa.

The company provides cleaning services every year during peak tourist months with a view to improving bathing conditions and encouraging respect for and sustainability of the environment. It cleans an area stretching 0.5 nautical miles out from the shore. The boats sweep debris from the zone closest to shore, including the bathing area.

The Catalonia coast includes 272 beaches extending from Llançà in northern Girona to L'Ampolla in southern Tarragona. FCC cleans 267 beaches and coves in the Balearic Islands: 147 in Mallorca, 43 in Menorca, 55 in Ibiza and 22 in Formentera. The company provides services in La Concha Bay in San Sebastián, including the La Concha and Ondarreta beaches.

In high-density areas, the waste consists primarily of plastic, organic material and seaweed. In port, the waste is generally related to fishing (i.e. tackle and wood).

To collect solid floating debris and provide comprehensive beach cleaning services, FCC uses 59 Marnett boats designed specifically for collecting floating and semi-submerged debris, seaweed and jellyfish in bathing areas and small oil spills in beaches and ports.

Each boat is crewed by a professional who is in charge of sailing and managing the waste collection system.

Communications systems

The boats ply their assigned territory throughout the day, focusing on areas with the greatest accumulation of debris and the most popular bathing sites. They are in constant contact with their area supervisors and with the local government coordination centres. All boats are fitted with voice and data communication systems and GPS, allowing for the immediate identification of each boat's location and expediting the resolution of incidents.

Information management

Data on the debris collected each day by each boat is entered into a database that is accessible via the internet. This allows for information to be processed and analysed quickly and easily and for key figures to be published almost immediately.

Leaders in Urban Sanitation

In 2008, FCC was awarded contracts totalling 2.887 billion euro for urban sanitation activities in Spain (waste collection, street cleaning, municipal waste management, facility management, garden maintenance, sewer cleaning, etc.), i.e. twice the 2007 figure.

FCC provides urban sanitation services (waste collection, street cleaning, municipal waste management, garden cleaning, etc.) in 3,597 of Spain's 8,100 municipalities, where it billed 1.440 billion euro in 2008, compared with 1.350 billion euro in 2007. The company serves 27 million people.

FCC's backlog in this area has expanded steadily and now amounts to 8.926 billion euro, i.e. 21.7% more than at 2007 year-end and equivalent to 70 months' work.

FCC also provides these services in the United Kingdom, Central Europe and Latin America, where revenues totalled over 1 billion euro.

FCC removes more than 500 kg of jellyfish from La concha Beach

FCC kept jellyfish away from the beaches by removing more than 4,000 of them (500 kg) from the waters of  La Concha Bay at the beginning of the summer.