Water protection cooperation with Russia

Water protection cooperation aims to reduce nutrient loads to the Gulf of Finland and the environmental risks posed to the Baltic Sea. As the largest source of nutrient loads to the Gulf of Finland, St Petersburg is the most important partner of the Ministry of the Environment. There is cooperation in other parts of Northwest Russia as well.

Cooperation with St Petersburg’s water and wastewater utility

The objective is to reduce the wastewater loads of the city of St Petersburg. The water and wastewater utility of the city treats 98 per cent of its wastewater, in line with the recommendations of the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission.

The Ministry of the Environment has financed cooperation projects by about EUR 40 million. Finland has also participated in projects through the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership Fund (NDEP) in cooperation with international financial institutions.

The most important achievements include:

  • the construction of the Southwest Wastewater Treatment Plant,
  • the construction of the Sewage Sludge Incinerator of the Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant,
  • introduction of enhanced phosphorus removal at the treatment plants,
  • cooperation between Helsinki Water and St Petersburg,
  • the construction of the River Neva trunk sewer tunnel.

The Ministry of the Environment has supported Finnish companies which have delivered equipment to St Petersburg and prepared and supervised projects. Investments in basic wastewater treatment infrastructure, the enhanced removal of phosphorus and the use and maintenance of the treatment plants have reduced the city's phosphorus load by more than 2,000 tonnes each year.

Leningrad, Vyborg, Sosnovy Bor and Petrozavodsk

The water protection projects for the cities in the Leningrad Oblast are being implemented under the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership cooperation. The Ministry of the Environment supported the water supply and sewerage development programme of four cities – Gatchina, Tikhvin, Pikalyovo and Kirovsk – with EUR 1.4 million. The total cost of the investment project was EUR 20 million.

The Vyborg wastewater treatment plant has tested chemical phosphorus removal. The project aimed at attaining the phosphorus removal levels recommended by the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission. The NEFCO is now leading the investigations on possible further measures.

Investments in the modernisation of the wastewater treatment plant of the city of Sosnovy Bor were funded by the city itself, the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO), the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership Fund, and the Ministry of the Environment. The ministry's financing was targeted at chemical phosphorus removal and procurement operations. The total cost of the project was EUR 2.9 million.

The city of Petrozavodsk is implementing an investment programme to improve the quality of drinking water and the treatment of wastewater in the city. The project is financed by the city itself, the Russian Federation and the Republic of Karelia, and NEFCO, the Nordic Investment Bank, the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership Fund, and the Ministry of the Environment. The ministry's financing is mainly targeted at procurement operations. The total cost of the project is EUR 32 million, of which the ministry contributes EUR 2 million.

Kaliningrad Wastewater Treatment Plant

The Kaliningrad Wastewater Treatment Plant opened in June 2017 has significant impacts on the whole Baltic Sea region. For a long time Kaliningrad has been one of the main sources of point-source pollution of the Baltic Sea, with wastewaters of almost half a million people discharged untreated into the sea. The wastewater treatment plant reduces the annual phosphorus load to the Baltic Sea by 120 tonnes and nitrogen emissions by 300 tonnes. These represent 0.7% and 0.08% of the total loading of the main basin of the Baltic Sea coming from the surrounding countries. The treatment fulfils the recommendations of the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission HELCOM with regard to phosphorus and organic matter but additional investments are needed to remove more nitrogen.

The costs of the treatment plant totalled about EUR 70 million, most of this financed by a special fund of the Russian Federation. The project also received direct donor funding from the state of Sweden and the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership Fund, through which Finland also participated in financing the project.

Agri-environmental cooperation in Northwest Russia

The nutrient loads to the Gulf of Finland from municipal sources have significantly decreased, but nutrient discharges from food production in Northwest Russia, in particular from large animal farms, pose an increasing environmental risk. The Ministry of the Environment has supported agri-environmental cooperation in the Leningrad Oblast, together with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, NEFCO and the Agricultural Committee of the Leningrad Oblast. This cooperation has included the drafting of instructions on sustainable agricultural practices, investigation of technical and financial alternatives for manure management on large farms, and the development of manure management on the Novoladozhky Farm on the shore of Lake Ladoga.

Further information

Kristiina Isokallio, Senior Ministerial Adviser, tel. +358 50 581 9618, firstname.lastname@ym.fi

 

 

Published 2013-07-30 at 13:37, updated 2017-08-25 at 13:38