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.
City of Helsinki Environment Services invited all project partners to the flagship project BEST kick of meeting to Helsinki, Finland on February 6-8, 2018. Presentations of the meeting are available at the Baltic Sea Challenge webpage.
The project aims to improve the management of industrial wastewater in municipal treatment plants in five Baltic Sea countries.
HELCOM and EUSBSR PA Nutri organised a joint workshop on internal nutrient reserves of the Baltic Sea in Gothenburg, Sweden on 28.-29.11.2017. The workshop gathered over 50 participants around the region to discuss the knowledge base on fluxes and dynamics of phosphorus in the Baltic Sea, potential measures to manage phosphorus at the Sea and political, leagal and socio-economic aspects as well as potential risks associated with such measures.
The memo and presentations of the Workshop are now available in the HELCOM Meeting Portal on the Workshop Meeting Site.
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.