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25.07.2016

IfAÖ is a partner in the EU - project ‘NonHazCity’

The objective of the Interreg project is to reduce pollutant emissions from urban areas in the Baltic Sea

The Institute for Applied Ecology GmbH (IfAÖ) is a partner in the EU project ‘NonHazCity’ (Non Hazard City). The project duration is 3 years (2016-2018) and is funded by EU funds with a total budget of EUR 3 Million. As part of the European Territorial Cooperation in the Baltic Sea region, the NonHazCity project aims to improve the condition of the Baltic Sea through efficient water management as well as reduced nutrients and pollutants contamination. The project’s lead partner is the Swedish capital Stockholm.

Chemicals in products have a hazardous impact on sewage systems

NonHazCity wants to demonstrate to cities / municipalities and wastewater treatment plants that there are possibilities to reduce the emission of priority pollutants, for example by small businesses and households in the municipal sewer system and ultimately to the outlet channel. Relevant substances should be identified and prioritized. Their sources should be detected and municipalities shall be supported when creating source materials on pollutants and a ‘Chemical Action Plan’. Several informational campaigns and workshops are planned. For example, households are to be informed about harmful chemicals in everyday use products and opportunities are to be identified to replace them.

IfAÖ involved with pollution analysis

The IfAÖ’s environmental toxicology department is a project partner of NonHazCity. One focus of the work is the comparative analysis of pollutants in municipal wastewater of the participating cities in the Baltic region. The review of reports is done in context of the implementation of the various EU water directives (Water Framework Directive, the Marine Strategy Framework Directive) as well as eco-toxicological aspects. Dr. Jens Gercken is convinced of the potential of the Interegg project: “For the first time, we will study what the real pollutant load in our municipal wastewater looks like. The results may be important for reducing the pollutant loads in wastewater systems of German cities and municipalities. "

Entire Baltic Sea region participating in NonHazCity

In addition to the lead city Stockholm, municipalities from all Baltic countries as well as the city of Gdansk, Gdansk University and the Gdansk sewage treatment plant and the Swedish Agricultural University are involved in NonHazCity. In addition, the Baltic Environment Forum (BEF) via their branch offices in the Baltic countries and in Hamburg is participating.