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On the occasion of its anniversary, the Bosch fire brigade is launching an apprenticeship for plant firemen
The Bosch fire brigade first saw the light of day on February 10, 1917: at the time, fire chief Wendelin Mayr of the Stuttgart fire department and 40 volunteer firefighters laid the foundation for fire fighting at the company. The success story started with a hose cart, an extending ladder, several hand pumps, and two respiratory protective devices. Today, the Bosch fire brigade is active at 60 locations around the world and counts 1,900 part-time and full-time associates who protect the company’s premises 24 hours a day.
Qualified industrial fire fighters are in high demand all over Germany, and that demand continues to increase. This is because applicants need to meet strict criteria and apprenticeships in industrial fire fighting are few and far between. To improve the situation, Bosch is planning to launch an apprenticeship in 2017 that will be accredited by the Chamber of Industry and Commerce. In so doing, the company will draw on its 100 years of experience. “In the future, we want to train 15 young people each year to perform these tasks,” says Siegfried Czock, who is charge of apprenticeships and continuing education at Bosch.
The job is multifaceted: in addition to fire prevention, the Bosch fire brigade regularly holds training seminars for associates and carries out environmental protection measures. “When called upon, they respond quickly and know their locations inside and out, so they can effectively protect people and save lives,” says Christoph Kübel, member of the Bosch board of management and head of industrial relations. The Bosch fire brigades also work beyond the walls of the company if required; they have provided manpower and equipment in the past, and are a reliable partner to more than 35 cities and municipalities in Germany. “Bosch fire brigades thus also contribute to municipal fire prevention, and this in turn makes communities safer.”
More information on Bosch fire brigades can be found here.
Bosch heating trends in 2017
The Bosch heating solutions of the future are digital, combined, and efficient. In 2017, the following three trends are in focus: smart technologies, hybrid heating systems, and low-emission pellet ovens.
Digital is better
Digital heating systems continue to make progress. Adaptive systems can automatically adjust room temperature according to time of day and weather developments. What is more, users can comfortably control their heating systems remotely via a PC, tablet, or smart phone. The application informs them of current energy consumption and gives tips to help save costs – and thus also heat in a more eco-friendly way. And should an error occur, repairmen can quickly intervene: the smart devices can inform technicians directly of a malfunction, thus enabling them to bring along exactly the parts needed for the repair.
Clever combined solutions
The principle of hybrid heating involves the best possible combination of different sources of heat. A mix of several different technologies is feasible: from gas or oil condensation boilers to heating pumps and solar thermal energy or photovoltaic arrays. The idea is that using renewable sources of energy reduces heating costs and makes homeowners more independent of individual sources of energy. What is more, combining efficient components with one another can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 30 percent.
Heating with wood
Modern pellet heating systems enable climate-friendly heat generation. They burn pellets made of sawdust and shavings in an almost carbon-neutral manner and are very efficient. In order to take full advantage of the system’s potential, extra buffer storage is recommended. This ensures that the boiler runs at the best possible heating operating point.
More information on current heating trends can be found here (only in German available).
Find out how current heating systems can help save energy with the Bosch renovation calculator (only in German available).
Settlement of the claims of consumers and dealers in used VW vehicles
Bosch has entered into a settlement agreement with civil claimants in the United States. The agreement would settle the claims of consumers and dealers of used vehicles against Robert Bosch GmbH, its affiliates, employees, and directors concerning Volkswagen and Audi diesel vehicles with 2.0L engines for model years 2009 through 2015 and Volkswagen, Audi, and Porsche diesel vehicles with 3.0L engines for model years 2009 through 2016. For this purpose, Bosch will pay a total amount of USD 327.5 million (approx. EUR 304 million). By entering into the settlement, Bosch neither acknowledges the facts as alleged by the plaintiffs nor does Bosch accept any liability.
“Upon careful consideration of all relevant aspects, we have in this case decided to enter into a settlement agreement. Bosch is currently undergoing the biggest transformation process in its company history. We wish to devote our attention and our resources to the transition in mobility and in other areas of activity”, said Dr. Volkmar Denner, Chairman of the Management Board of Robert Bosch GmbH.
The settlement agreement was concluded with the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee (“PSC”) on behalf of proposed settlement classes. Jurisdiction resides with the competent U.S. Court, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. In a hearing scheduled for 14 February 2017, the Court will consider to grant preliminary approval of the settlement agreement. It is proposed that the Court considers final approval of the settlement agreement in early May.
The settlement agreement concerns only civil law claims. As it has done since allegations have first been made public, Bosch will continue to defend its interests in all other civil and criminal law proceedings and to cooperate comprehensively with the investigating authorities in Germany and in other countries.
More information on the topic can be found here.
Bosch India provides warm meals to underprivileged school children
In India, many needy families face a dilemma: if they send their children to school, they often have too little money left over to pay for food. And if children have to work, they do not have access to education, cannot learn an occupation, and thus cannot escape poverty.
In order to provide these children with educational opportunities, Bosch India is supporting the construction of a canteen kitchen not far from the city of Bengaluru. As soon as February, the kitchen is set to start delivering warm lunches to 15,000 school children each day in the vicinity of the new Bosch manufacturing site in Bidadi. There are many state schools in the region that are attended mainly by children from poor families. “With the offer of a warm meal, we are providing families with an incentive to send their children to school,” explains Om Parkash Goel of Bosch India. “But we are also creating jobs: we need 80 employees to run the kitchen.” In addition to funding the project and providing all the required utensils, Bosch has also supported the project with its expertise in the areas of project and purchasing management.
The Indian NGO Akshaya Patra (“food bowl”) has carried out the project. The foundation has supported the education of underprivileged children since 2000 by providing them warm, healthy meals. Today, the organization offers lunch to as many as 1.7 million children at 13,529 schools each day. It has a far-reaching logistical network and expertise in preparing and distributing food for canteen kitchens. While Akshaya Patra is funded with state subsidies, corporate donations are an indispensable part of its budget. Bosch was referred to the Akshaya Patra Foundation by associates that volunteer for the NGO.
More information on the Akshaya Patra Foundation can be found here.
Picture by Akshaya Patra Foundation.
Robert Bosch Stiftung is preparing for the future
New developments at Robert Bosch Stiftung
Robert Bosch Stiftung is responding to current global challenges with a new strategic direction that includes better integrating refugees, improving community, and strengthening access to education around the world. Effective immediately, the Stiftung is focusing its activities on the three following areas: “Migration, Integration, and Participation”, “Social cohesion in Germany and Europe”, and “Sustainable Living Spaces” At the same time, at its New Years reception on January 18, 2017 in Berlin, senior executives reviewed the Stiftung’s positive results for last year: in 2016, some 107.9 million euros went toward charitable causes (status of January 19, 2017).
“With the three new focal areas, we are addressing major, relevant topics,” said Ute-Micaela Dürig, the CEO of Robert Bosch Stiftung. “Thanks to the expertise we have acquired in the areas we have traditionally funded, we can also make a lasting contribution to these three new focal areas.” Last year, an expert commission put together by Robert Bosch Stiftung presented 99 recommended areas of action for Germany’s refugee policy, and also made suggestions with regard to improving integration. The main points are reflected in the country’s integration law, which recently went into effect. At the same time, the experts have supported pilot projects that show how social and cultural participation can succeed with innovative approaches.
Ute-Micaela Dürig, the CEO of Robert Bosch Stiftung
In order to promote European cohesion and thus the second focal point, the team has also created platforms that invite private citizens to take part in a constructive conversation about the continent’s future. One such platform was the “Europe 21” program highlight, which was organized on the occasion of the 2016 Leipzig book fair. At discussions, readings, and talks with authors, writers, scientists, journalists, and representatives of civil society discussed ways in which cross-border dialog could be organized.
The “Sustainable Living Spaces” focal point is closely linked to the Stiftung’s commitment to Africa. In cooperation with local partners, the Stiftung’s employees are committed to improving access to education across the continent and providing young people with a fair starting point. In 2016, the first science conference to take place in Africa marked an important milestone.
More information on Robert Bosch Stiftung’s new strategy can be found here.
All pictures by Manuel Frauendorf.