10 Oct 2017

NIB-financed wastewater treatment plant opens in St Petersburg, Russia

Vodokanal's mobile lab measures the level of nutrient removal at the Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant on the launch day. Photo: Vodokanal of St Petersburg.

On 10 October, the city of Saint Petersburg, Russia, opened its upgraded Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant (NWTP). The project is part of a large investment programme aimed at improving the environmental status of the Baltic Sea and co-financed by a group of international donors and financial institutions.

Increasing the capacity of the NWTP was the final step of the Neva Closure of Discharges of Untreated Wastewater Programme that has resulted in the city cleaning more than 98% of its effluent and achieving compliance with the HELCOM recommendation in nutrient removal.

The investment programme included the enhancement of the Central and Northern wastewater treatment plants, construction of a sludge incineration plant, completion of the Northern Tunnel Collector, as well as a number of other projects.

The Northern Wastewater Treatment Plant’s capacity has been expanded to process 1,200,000 cubic metres of wastewater a day. The project includes three new aeration tanks and twelve secondary sedimentation tanks, process changes to the existing aeration tanks and chemical precipitation unit, as well as the necessary field instrumentation and automation system.

“The city should be proud of these achievements. This proves the efficiency of international cooperation that has involved Russia, Finland, Sweden, the EU, the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership, as well as international financial institutions. We are impressed with the commitment of the city and its water service company Vodokanal, pledging to improve the company’s environmental performance that has so much importance for the entire Baltic Sea region,” said Thomas Wrangdahl, NIB's First Vice-President, at the NWTP opening ceremony in St Petersburg.

The programme has been implemented by the city’s water service company Vodokanal of St Petersburg.

As a priority project within the framework of the Northern Dimension Environmental Partnership (NDEP), the Neva Programme received a EUR 24 million grant from the NDEP, grants from the EBRD Shareholder Special Fund, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, Finland’s Ministry of the Environment and the John Nurminen Foundation, totalling EUR 20.5 million, as well as a total of EUR 60 million in loans from the Nordic Investment Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the European Investment Bank. NIB acted as lead bank and coordinator of the financing structure of the project.