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The Workshop on nutrient recycling in the Baltic Sea countries was organized on 27–28 March by Julius Kühn-Institut and HELCOM in cooperation with the EUSBSR PA Bioeconomy, Hazards and Nutri.

The event attracted more than 40 experts from the region and representatives from the organizations and companies addressing nutrient recycling on various scales. The programme of the workshop approached the issue extensively from different point of views: European concepts and regulations, HELCOM recycling policies, experience of the countries in the Baltic Sea Region. Two parallel sessions introduced particular aspects and applications of nutrients: manure and sewage sludge.

A number of factors have been identified as drivers or obstacles towards recycling nutrients in both sessions. While for manure it is important to acknowledge its economic value and thereby promote recycling through new business opportunities, in the context of sewage sludge, apart from the economic situation, practices are largely affected by the size of the WWTPs, applied technologies and availability of phosphorus on the market.

You can find the full report from the workshop on nutrient recycling as well as the delivered presentations on the HELCOM website.

Key figure collection

One of the presentations in the sewage sludge session was given by Mr. Taavo Tenno from the partner of IWAMA – University of Tartu. He introduced legislation concerning sewage sludge in the Baltic States and presented the IWAMA project.

Smart sludge management is one of three main pillars in our project (others being capacity development and smart energy management), and the University of Tartu is the partner responsible for its development. There are many challenges on the way to the integrated sludge handling in the region: different legislation and practices, politics and tariffs, sizes of WWT plants. IWAMA addresses these challenges and aims at compiling a benchmark of situation in WWTPs in the Baltic Sea Region, developing the audit concept that would be later available for all plants wishing to perform this procedure, and implementing pilot investments in eight plants of the region.

For successful development of the benchmark, the key figure questionnaire has been sent out to the WWTPs around the Baltic Sea, and the data have been processed based on more than 65 delivered results. Below are a several images with the first results of this work. Full presentation can be found here.

Technologies used on these plants according to the size of WWTPs in PE:


Specific technologies used in the region:


Heavy metal concentrations in sludge in the Baltic Sea Region according to the HELCOM regulations:


Regional usage of treated sludge:


Picture of Mr. Taavo Tenno on the right taken from Interreg Baltic Sea Twitter.