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FCC Environment to provide refuse collection and street cleansing services in Bilbao and serve Mercabilbao for the next four years


FCC Environment to provide refuse collection and street cleansing services in Bilbao and serve Mercabilbao for the next four years

Bilbao City Council has awarded a JV in which FCC has the majority shareholding, the contract to cleanse the streets and collect the refuse in the city, and to handle the wastes of Mercabilbao for four years with a possible extension of two years. The annual contract value exceeds €43 million, with a total backlog, without extensions, of €173.4 million.

FCC Environment to provide refuse collection and street cleansing services in Bilbao and serve Mercabilbao for the next four years

This is the sixth contract connecting FCC Medio Ambiente (the Spanish brand for FCC Environment) with Bilbao City Council without interruption since 1972. The contract awarded on this occasion is divided into two lots. Lot 1 is for street cleansing and refuse collection services for the city of Bilbao and lot 2 corresponds to the handling of the wastes from Mercabilbao.

The main companies in the sector answered the public tender called by the Council and FCC Medio Ambiente’s proposal obtained the highest score. To deliver these works, FCC will have an average staff of 664 people for lot 1 and 14 people for lot 2.

Bilbao has almost 350,000 inhabitants and with this contract, more than 144,000 tonnes of municipal solid waste will be handled per year. It will be removed and transferred to various handlers for treatment, the main destination being the Arraiz-Artigas environmental management complex.

FCC will renew more than 80% of the current waste collection fleet (201 new vehicles and 47 reconditioned). It is also committed to environment-friendly technologies since it will incorporate 62 electric, non-polluting vehicles in the service, forming 25% of the fleet.

The company will put new technical means into operation, adapted to the properties of the waste to be collected and the specific needs of the city. This includes side-loading collection vehicles of various sizes and small hybrid-electrical vehicles with no pollutants, or sound emissions, for refuse collection in the old city centre.

In addition, to improve the service for citizens, the efficiency of the system and the recycling percentages in Bilbao for the next six years, the selective organic matter collection will be extended to all of Bilbao (1,400 additional containers). For this, a side-loading collection system will be implemented, the same currently used for the collection of other materials: black bag waste, packaging and commercial cardboard, using containers opened with an electronic card, allowing better management and attention for operators. The paper-cardboard (+20%) and used oils (+70%) containers will also be reinforced.

As an innovation, the selective collection will also be implemented in municipal markets, differentiating between the fractions rest, organic matter, paper-cardboard and polystyrene.

The new contract also includes the full renovation of two of the four civic amenity sites or ‘Bilbogarbis’ and the partial renovation of the other two. They will thus be more accessible and comfortable for the public with easier functioning adapted to the new regulations for handling the new types of wastes that can be deposited. There will also be a selection space (‘Berrerabilgunea’) that will allow a second life to some materials deposited by the public that are susceptible for re-use. The ‘Bilbogarbis’ mobile service is strengthened with two new vehicles in addition to the existing one.

FCC is committed to arriving at 2020 with recovery rates through selective collection of 50% of waste generated, complying with the European Directive and the Royal Decree that transposes it.

The highest quality cleaning service will also be extended (daily cleaning as well as maintenance checks throughout the day, provided until now only in the city centre) to almost all the districts in Bilbao, to the districts considered as ‘district hearts’ in which there is commerce and hospitality activity.

To provide all these services, the conventional equipment will be reinforced with more efficient and state-of-the-art machinery.

As well as the usual sweeping and washing services, other special services will be carried out including façade cleaning, scrubbing and stripping pavements, removing chewing gum and the disinfection and cleaning up of dog excrement, for which the number of multi-use equipment will be increased. Another important innovation is the incorporation of self-propelled light vacuum cleaners to maintain cleanliness in busy areas.

The centre of Bilbao will continue to be swept and washed at night, using pressure equipment that minimises water consumption for this work with the same effectiveness as now. Electric sweepers of various sizes will minimise the fumes, heat and noise generated by conventional engines. The rest of the city will be swept with conventional sweepers, some of which will be "dual" sweepers/washers.

Both litter bins and containers will be subject to a detailed control and maintenance for which they will be identified with a tag that gives details of their location and filling.

All the data relating to the service from the work teams (time schedules, performance, status, incidents, quality, etc), the containers and litter bins will be processed on a computer management platform designed and defined exclusively by FCC Medio Ambiente for the city of Bilbao. This platform will allow the implementation of the "Friendly" service, that is, it is carried out effectively but with the minimum of nuisance for the public.