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PURE - Riga Water Ltd improves its phosphorus removal from waste waters to HELCOM recommendation level

Riga Water Ltd (SIA Rīgas ūdens) hosted this week a PURE (Project on Urban Reduction of Eutrophication) workshop to review technical audits for improving project partners' waste water and sludge treatment. The workshop included yesterday a study visit to the Daugavgrīva waste water treatment plant of Riga Water, where upgrading of the processes will take place.

- Over the course of the next year, a substantial reconstruction of the Biological Treatment Plant (BTP) Daugavgrīva will be undertaken which is expected to significantly reduce the volume of nitrogen and phosphorus released into the Gulf of Riga, says treatment plant director Maris Zviedris. - Thanks to funding raised from Baltic Sea Region Programme, Riga Water was able to start the investment.   

Riga Water is the pilot investor in PURE project, and improves phosphorus removal from its waste waters. The company is targeting to HELCOM recommendation level for the Baltic Sea, which is stricter than EU regulations for waste water treatment. The investment in Riga consists of chemical dosing and flow measuring equipment for phosphorus removal and a centrifuge for better sludge management. Reaching the HELCOM target in Riga will reduce the annual discharge of phosphorus to the Baltic Sea by approximately 100 tons.

Riga Water Ltd and a number of other organizations are jointly implementating the PURE project, which has enabled them to raise funds for specific technological solutions. Thus, about EUR 300,000 will be invested in reducing the discharge of phosphorus compounds at Riga Daugavgrīva plant.

Only when the organizations in countries located around the Baltic Sea cooperate it will be possible to achieve a recovery of the sea and ensure clean water for future generations.  This can be achieved ecologically and economically most efficiently and fastest by implementing advanced phosphorus removal and proper sludge management in wastewater treatment of municipalities as PURE demonstrates.

Phosphorus inputs to the Baltic must be further cut by about 15,000 tonnes. PURE aims at annual reduction of at least 300-500 tonnes of phosphorus from the Baltic via investments in Riga, Jurmala and Brest water utilities and operational improvements in Gdansk, Kohtla-Järve and Szczecin.

PURE (Project on urban reduction of eutrophication) tackles eutrophication of the Baltic Sea by enhancing phosphorus removal in selected municipal waste water treatment plants in the Baltic Sea Region. The lead partner Union of the Baltic Cities Commission on Environment and partner organizations John Nurminen Foundation and HELCOM form the steering group of the project.

Press release 21.10.2010 on PURE website:

published 22.10.2010