PURE - Project on Urban Reduction of Eutrophication

Project description

Eutrophication is the major environmental problem of the Baltic Sea. PURE (Project on Urban Reduction of Eutrophication) aimed at an annual reduction of at least 500 tons of phosphorous load to the Baltic Sea. This was achieved by direct investments by selected wastewater treatment plants in Latvia and in Belarus. The objective was that WWTPs reach HELCOM’s recommendation regarding phosphorous content in the out flow. Reaching this target in municipal wastewater treatment plants in the Baltic Sea catchment area is crucial because of the current alarming state of the sea. Moreover the project has identified solutions for improving the sludge management within wastewater treatment plants and a book on Good Practices in Sludge Management, first of its kind in the Baltic Sea Region, has been published. Further, a new online tool “PURE BenchMark” has been developed, to improve sharing and visualizing information on municipal wastewater treatment and loads to the Baltic Sea.


  1. Improved wastewater treatment (phosphorous removal)
  2. Improved sludge handling capacity
  3. Increased commitment and actions around the region for Baltic Sea protection


  1. Investments in wastewater treatment plants in Jurmala and Riga, Latvia, and in Brest, Belarus, resulted in annual reduction of at least 500 tons of phosphorous load to the Baltic Sea.
  2. The book "Good Practices in Sludge Management" presents technical solutions used in sludge handling and disposal processes, compares the results achievable by application of different techniques and explores relevant emerging technologies and legal limitations for the further sewage sludge use.
  3. “PURE Benchmark online database” for municipalities and water companies contains wastewater treatment information from 30 municipalities and 3100 wastewater treatment plants. The user-friendly and practical online tool has been developed by local users for practical needs like reporting and anonymous benchmarking. The database monitors the level of wastewater treatment and technology used in the BSR.


Baltic Sea Region Programme 2007-2013