Machinery park and some worksites in Portugal

Description of the Environmental Measure

Problem detected:

In some works in Portugal, particularly those over a wider area, and in the Equipment Depot there were processes of contamination of the soil, due to discharges of cement, used oils or hazardous substances.

This basically occurred because some concrete mixers rinsed their discharge chutes directly on site, which, as well as having a considerable impact on the environment, created a negative image among the local townspeople. Moreover, although the site had sealed areas for the equipment, at times some components were left in other areas where the ground was unprotected, which could lead to discharges of used oils.

Solutions adopted:

When it was discovered that this problem was recurring in several different sites, it was decided as an internal requirement that all FCC works must set up washing pools for the chutes that would need to be easy to access and fully sealed and signposted, with protection from the rain whenever possible. These washing areas were designed to be of sufficient size to handle the amount of concrete expected. Also, through the purchase specifications, concrete suppliers were informed that this was mandatory and that no drums were to be washed on site, only the chutes being permitted to be washed there.

In addition to the maintenance of the vehicles and equipment in waterproofed areas, it was also ensured that the equipment or component parts thereof that could cause possible contamination of the soil with oils or gasoil would always be stored in waterproofed zones.


As a result of this generally implemented practice, there has been a significant reduction in cases of soil alteration on sites due to possible spillage of water from washing cement, oil or fuels.

There has also been a reduction in complaints from nearby towns and the implementation of this new system contributes to preventing possible non-compliances with laws and regulation with the adverse rulings that might entail.

Finally, the customers have demonstrated their satisfaction with the environmental management of the works, which are now cleaner and more organised.