Cleaning the Baltic Sea by improving the treatment of wastewater

By far the most nutrients that enter the Baltic Sea are the result of diffuse loading from agriculture. According to an estimate by HELCOM, the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission, the fastest way to help the sea is nevertheless to focus on the remaining large point sources of loading. This is especially true for reducing phosphorous, the key nutrient for blue-green algae and a main nutrient behind the eutrophication of the Baltic Sea. It is estimated that up to two-thirds of the cuts in phosphorous loading required to restore the Baltic Sea by 2021, can be achieved by further improving the treatment of municipal wastewater and removing the phosphorous from toilet water.

The John Nurminen Foundation began promoting a cleaner Baltic Sea in 2004 in St. Petersburg and now operates throughout the Baltic Sea Region. The foundation’s motto is to select targets where the least cost achieves the largest possible positive impact on the environment. Cooperation with local water utilities can begin if they have a functional wastewater treatment infrastructure – as well as the motivation and readiness to cooperate.

St. Petersburg is a model pupil

The foundation’s cooperation project with the St. Petersburg water utility was completed in 2011. Improved wastewater treatment combined with cuts in phosphorous emissions from the fertiliser plant in Kingisepp have reduced the phosphorous loading on the Gulf of Finland by almost 60 percent. The City of St. Petersburg has indeed become a model pupil in wastewater treatment, but there remains a lot to do still in the Leningrad and Kaliningrad regions of Russia. Wastewater sludge could also be utilised more as an energy source. The sludge is already being recycled in Viikinmäki in Helsinki and Warsaw. According to Leszek Drogosz, Director of the Infrastructure Department at the City of Warsaw, 30 percent of the energy required annually to light up the city’s streetlamps is created by utilising the biogas from wastewater sludge. This corresponds to 140 railway wagons of coal a year.

Finnish wastewater treatment plants produce cleaner water for the Baltic Sea

Timo Salonen from Algol Chemicals is an expert in wastewater treatment chemicals. The chemicals he supplies to municipal wastewater treatment plants for removing phosphorous include polyaluminium chloride (PAX) and ferric precipitation (PIX) products. “The quality of municipal wastewater treatment in Finland is very good, I would say. In practice, the water released into the sea from wastewater treatment plants along the coast is much cleaner than the seawater itself. We achieve good results especially in eliminating phosphorous loads,” Salonen says.

 

This article is based on material supplied by the John Nurminen Foundation and an interview with Timo Salonen, product manager at Algol Chemicals. The Algol Group supports the Clean Baltic Sea project

Further information about wastewater treatment chemicals

News and articles

2018-11-28
Groundbreaking recycled nutrients collaboration with Algol Chemicals and Gasum

2018-09-12
Algol Chemicals launched new product at the Kuninkuusravit event in Finland

2018-05-23
Algol Chemicals starts cooperation with flavour company Takasago

2018-03-26
HYET Sweet sweeteners now available from Algol Chemicals

2018-02-20
Success story: IGIS, Lithuania

2017-12-18
Algol Group donates to six charities this Christmas

2017-12-07
Our Customers like us

2017-11-15
Algol supports renovation of Olympic Stadium in Helsinki

2017-09-13
Summer jobs: a win-win for all parties

2017-08-01
Towards even better service - Our Service Principles

2017-04-28
Algol makes a donation for Crisis Management Initiative

2017-03-28
Emergency exercise at Algol warehouses in Espoo on 5 April

2017-03-16
Algol Chemicals appointed by Evonik for silica’s in the Nordics

2016-12-07
Algol Chemicals to participate in joint exercise at the port of Turku on 7 December

2016-11-30
Algol Chemicals scores higher than average in SQAS evaluation  

2016-10-18
Algol Chemicals sponsors Aalto-Helsinki iGEM team

2016-09-28
Responsible Care in Algol Chemicals

2016-05-27
Algol Chemicals is looking for a Customer Service Coordinator in Estonia

2016-05-03
TMT 15: safer solution for cleaning heavy metals from flue gas

2016-04-27
Finnish industry needs to reduce emissions further

2016-02-16
Do you know where your table salt comes from?

2016-01-25
Algol Chemicals acquires Indian distributor

2016-01-12
Algol Group donates 50,000 euros to university fundraising campaigns

2015-12-18
Accident simulations put safety skills to the test

2015-10-20
Meet us at FEM 2015 mining fair

2015-06-12
Safety is vital when reusing chemical packaging

2015-06-11
Zinco Service: Using ultrasound to inspect cracking risk of steel kettles

2015-06-05
Algol Chemicals celebrates 20 years in Latvia

2015-05-04
Toptex B - The polymer that makes your asphalt last longer

2015-01-26
Algol Chemicals Strengthens its Scandinavian Footprint through the Acquisition of Amixo AB

2014-09-23
Algol Chemicals and Omya will establish a joint venture in Russia for distribution of calcium carbonate and specialty chemicals

2014-09-01
Cleaning the Baltic Sea by improving the treatment of wastewater

2014-08-13
We have moved to Malmö

2014-08-13
Warehouse operations outsourced

2014-06-03
Importing Mining Chemicals into Europe responsibly

2014-03-28
Welcome to our New Internet-pages

2014-03-25
Welcome to Plastteknik 2014