Policy Area Nutri of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region works on Saving the Sea, which is one of the three main objectives of the Strategy. The aim of the Policy Area is to reduce nutrient inputs to the Baltic Sea to acceptable levels.
Of the many environmental challenges facing the Baltic Sea, the most serious and difficult to tackle with conventional approaches is the continuing eutrophication. Excessive nutrient loads through agricultural run-off, inadequately treated sewage, airborne emissions and internal loading are the main cause of eutrophication. The impacts of eutrophication include oxygen depletion, reduced water clarity, an increase in filamentous algae, summer blooms of cyanobacteria (blue green algae) and other undesirable changes in species composition.
The latest decades' large-scale investments in waste water treatment plants and key decisions on cleaner shipping have had an important impact on decreasing the nutrient load. According to the latest HELCOM assessment total normalised nitrogen and phosphorus inputs to the Baltic Sea have decreased with 18% and 23%, respectively, since the mid-1990s. However, to save the sea, further and continued action is needed.
EUSBSR Flaghip project NutriTrade mixes activities to implement practical measures and to develop longer-term solutions to combat eutrophication. In particular, its digital crowdfunding platform Nutribute may prove to multiply the impact of the flagship over the time. Nutribute facilitates encountering of Baltic Sea savers and can be used as a fundraising tool for concrete measures to reduce eutrophication. In other words, Nutribute harnesses digital technology to contribute towards cleaning the Baltic Sea and thus contributes to the EUSBSR ‘Save the Sea’ objective.
The 8th Annual Forum of the EU
Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region took place in Berlin, Germany on 13–14 June
2017. The major theme of the event was “Connectivity” highlighting the
development of cooperation and the necessity to intensify contacts in the
region. The Annual Forum brought together participants from governments,
international organisations, universities and businesses, and the event offers
a wide networking occasion for the regional actors to share results and
experience, look for solutions of local challenges. It was attended by over 800
participants with altogether 26
Several seminars and
back-to-back meetings were organised during the Annual Forum. Below are some
highlights of PA Nutri activities.
The Baltic Sea needs smart water sector
project IWAMA held a Smart Water sector –seminar focusing on capacity
building and cross-border cooperation for successful technology transfer within
water sector. The seminar consisted of expert presentations and a discussion
round among the panellists. Presentations reflected the importance of capacity
development from various perspectives: those of funders and investors,
researches and practitioners in the field, as well as institutions offering
continuous education possibilities. The panel discussion stressed the
importance of tackling bottlenecks in lifelong learning practices both on
national and international levels.
North-West Russian Regions
Baltic Sea Region Programme hosted a workshop showcasing ongoing regional
cooperation with Russian partners. Flagship project IWAMA took part of the
seminar presenting highlighting the importance of cooperation to reach the
regional goals. Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme
intends to pave the way for cooperation in transnational projects with Russia.
Harnessing the digital
revolution for the protection of the Baltic Sea
project NutriTrade organised a session in the Connectivity Lounge to present the project activities
and especially the Nutribute platform. The session
presented three case studies where new digital technologies contribute towards
a clean Baltic Sea:
Nutribute platform to boost cooperation to save the
How literate are we in the
Baltic Sea Region on a well-known issue such as eutrophication?
workshop on Ocean Literacy in the frame of the
H2020 project ResponSEAble took place in German Federal
Ministry of the Environment 14 and 15
June 2017. The workshop discussed the scientific knowledge and awareness of
policy makers on eutrophication and agriculture, how to communicate the right
messages to right stakeholders and how to make an impact in the producer
consumer value chain. The aim of the project is to find whom do we need to talk
to with which message to increase literacy and change behaviour to lead to a
reduction of eutrophication in the Baltic Sea especially in regards of
The Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme Monitoring Committee selected 39 new projects for funding in the thematic fields of capacity for innovation, management of natural resources and sustainable transport, including PA Nutri flagship project BEST. The new projects will complement 35 projects from the first call and will contribute to a more innovative, better accessible and connected Baltic Sea region.
BEST (Better efficiency for sewage treatment) aims at better control of industrial discharges by jointly developing sustainable cooperation and optimal treatment for industrial discharges with municipal authorities, water utilities and industrial companies and cut down the load of nutrients and hazardous substances to the Baltic Sea. The project is led by the City of Helsinki, Environment Centre, Finland
Additionally, the Monitoring Committee selected 25 Seed Money projects, which will hopefully evolve into full scale transnational projects that will support the implementation of the EUSBSR. Project ideas DESIRE and QWATERA are under PA Nutri.