The 10th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region took place on 12–13 June 2019 in Gdańsk, Poland, with more than 700 participants. The event’s overarching theme was circular economy, taking into consideration demographic situation in the region, finding synergies with business, and supporting environmental work.
IWAMA project representatives joined the event to present project results and network with the stakeholders from around the Baltic Sea Region. Promotional materials of IWAMA expanded to several stands taking different context:
- The stand of projects funded by the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme introducing practical results of transnational cooperation.
- The stand of Policy Area ‘Nutri’ demonstrating successful cooperation in smart water management through projects and platforms
- The stand of Union of the Baltic Cities presenting international projects led by UBC Sustainable Cities Commission and their role in supporting cities of the region in becoming smart, sustainable and safe.
Moreover, two partners of IWAMA – representatives from University of Tartu and from Gdańsk Water Utility – participated in a parallel seminar "Safe nutrient recycling for cleaner Baltic Sea". This seminar was launched by the Policy Areas 'Nutri' and 'Hazards' together with HELCOM Secretariat to engage into discussions on development of the Regional Nutrient Recycling Strategy.
The seminar hosted a panel discussion among representatives of different sectors: water company, fertilizers' producer, university, national ministry and the EU Commission. The discussion resulted in not only listed challenges to the process and value of nutrient recycling, but also emphasized long-term benefits for the companies to engage in nutrient recovery. As an example of the latter, Marek Swinarski, Chief Process Engineer at Gdańsk Water Utility shared several practical points, among them: reducing nitrogen load on treatment processes, possibility to lower operational costs and reduction of costs on upgrading wastewater treatment plants. Over the course of IWAMA the wastewater treatment plant in Gdańsk invested in a combined anammox-constructed wetland pilot-plant to develop and test energy efficient and cost-effective solution for wastewater treatment.