A common multidisciplinary approach across the Central Baltic region, based on wide scientific and practical knowledge is needed to promote the cleaner future of the Baltic Sea. Reducing nutrients and hazardous substances inflows to the Baltic Sea is a complex task that requires tailor made strategies implemented at grass root level actions. WATERCHAIN supports several levels of actions, project helps to reduce inflows of nutrients and hazardous substances to the Baltic Sea from all types of land-based sources with commitment of the project partners as well as beneficiaries, the local people and visitors from all Central Baltic countries.
The main actions are carried out in the pilot watersheds in each partner country with the practical actions targeted to sustainable impact. The sustainable use of common resources is based both on prevention of nutrients and hazardous substances inflow, as well as on water treatment of these harmful substances already entered the water bodies, as pointed out in Regional Water Management plans, HELCOM Baltic Sea Action Plan, as well as EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. During the project period, one to two sources of nutrients or hazardous substances recognized by river basin water management plans will be identified and activities to reduce the substances in each pilot watershed will be initiated. By year 2023, in pilot watersheds flowing into the Baltic Sea the pollution loads of nutrients and hazardous substances from targeted sources are reduced.
Many actors will be engaged in the WATERCHAIN project. Best practices will be launched in other geographical areas within the Central Baltic region and further all countries around the Baltic Sea. Project results have a direct impact on the quality of living environment of local people and visitors to the area, especially on pilot watersheds. As a whole, the results increase the competitiveness and economic sustainability of all Central Baltic countries.
Expected Results (EN):
R2.4. The amounts of nutrients, hazardous substances and toxins inflows into the Baltic Sea
Expected Outputs (EN):
The main results are practices with a common approach for sustainable development i.e. reduced nutrients and hazardous substances inflows into the Central Baltic Sea region. Our main results are based on several approaches: 1) information collection, surveys for benchmarking, recommendations and guidelines, 2) prevention of inflows and 3) improvement and implementation of cost effective environmental treatment technologies, 4) involvement of local people and visitors, and implementation of best practices, 5) pilot investments. The grass root level, including local operators, results are achieved in working with pilot watersheds. During the project period, one to two sources of nutrients or hazardous substances recognized by river basin water management plans will be reduced in each pilot. By year 2023, in pilot watersheds flowing into the Baltic Sea the pollution loads of nutrients from targeted sources are reduced 30 % and concentrations of hazardous substances will meet the requirements environmental quality standards 39/2013/EU. The sources of these compounds are reduced to one third of the current situation. A web based interactive handbook of best practices for reduction of pollution is published in English and local languages. Social Media is already in use for the project: "Central Baltic WATERCHAIN" webpages, Facebook, LinkedIn Group, Twitter, Youtube and Instagram.Involvement of individual, local people living in the pilot watersheds and visitors to the area contributes to active, common practices of different instances. The existing action groups are activated and involved for cooperation and based on need, new groups will be formed. Local municipalities, organisations and authorities responsible for environmental protection and capable of the reduction of the nutrients and hazardous substances load, and research institutions with expertise in the area are working together to improve water quality and better condition of the Central Baltic Sea region.