Kaliningrad Wastewater Treatment Plant officially opened

Press release 2017-06-07 at 10:34

Ministry of the Environment and Ministry for Foreign Affairs

The official opening of the Kaliningrad Wastewater Treatment Plant takes place on 7 June 2017. The construction work of the plant was completed in 2015, and since then the plant has been taken into use step-by-step. The handling and disposal of wastewater sludge that was a condition for the operations was ready in May 2017.

The Wastewater Treatment Plant will have significant impacts on the whole Baltic Sea region. For a long time Kaliningrad has been one of the greatest sources of point-source pollution still remaining in the Baltic Sea region, with the wastewater of almost half a million residents discharged untreated into the sea. The wastewater treatment plant will reduce the annual phosphorus load to the Baltic Sea by 120 tonnes and nitrogen emissions by 300 tonnes. These represent 0.7 and 0.08 per cent 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 nitrogen.

The construction of the wastewater treatment plant was started as early as the 1980s. The project has been delayed for years, it has met with many obstacles, and the construction work has been suspended several times. It was not until December 2007 when the Russian Federation confirmed its funding for the project and the Financing Agreement of the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership was signed. The project also includes the drinking water treatment plant in the eastern part of the city (EUR 35 million), which should be completed in 2018.

The costs of the wastewater treatment plant totalled about EUR 70 million. The project was mainly financed from a special fund of the Russian Federation. Direct donations for the project were made by Sweden and the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership, through which Finland also contributed to the funding.

Inquiries

Kristiina Isokallio, Head of International Affairs, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 295 250 103, firstname.lastname@ym.fi

Birgit Autere, Team Leader, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, tel. +358 50 436 4645 firstname.lastname@formin.fi (7.-8.6. tel. +358 50 3120 537)

Laura Saijonmaa, Senior Environmental Adviser, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 295 250 261, firstname.lastname@ym.fi (7.-8.6. tel. +358 50 356 5683)