Boost for wastewater treatment facilities in the Kaliningrad region

The wastewater treatment plant will be upgraded partly with a loan from NEFCO. Photo: Patrik Rastenberger

NEFCO and the water company, OKOS, have signed a loan agreement to rehabilitate wastewater treatment facilities serving the towns of Svetlogorsk, Pionersk and Zelenogradsk in Russia.

According to the terms of the agreement, NEFCO will extend a loan of EUR 3.5 million for the project. Other financiers include the EU, which has provided a grant of EUR 9.5 million and the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which has availed SEK 6.9 million. As part of the programme, the authorities in the Kaliningrad region have also decided to finance the construction of new wastewater treatment plants in the towns of Baltisk and Ozerki at an estimated cost of about EUR 10 million.

The treatment plant will be entirely reconstructed as a result of the project, which includes the rehabilitation of the main sewers and pumping stations as well as the installation of frequency converters. Measures will also be taken to stop leakages from broken and rusty pipelines.

The 35-year-old plant processes the wastewater discharged by 56,000 people residing in the towns of Svetlogorsk, Zelenogradsk and Pionersk. The amount of wastewater discharged by the towns is around 12,000 cubic metres per day. When the project is completed, the plant will handle wastewater from 67,000 people as new residential areas will be connected to the network, and the upgrade will triple the plant’s capacity to 35,000 cubic metres.

According to preliminary calculations, the project will reduce phosphorus discharges by around 13 tonnes per year, which is equivalent to unprocessed discharges from a population of some 18,000 persons. The project is also expected to reduce energy consumption by at least 30 per cent.

“It’s a highly cost-effective way of reducing eutrophicating discharges to the Baltic Sea because in this project the per-tonne price of removing phosphorus is a fraction of that obtaining in the Nordic countries, says NEFCO’s Senior Investment Manager, Ulf Bojö.

The project is part of an extensive wastewater facilities rehabilitation programme, which covers several small towns and villages in the Kaliningrad region. The EU and NEFCO have identified 20 locations in urgent need of wastewater treatment facilities rehabilitation. The first in line are Svetlogorsk, Pionersk and Zelenogradsk, partly because of their exposed location on the coast, and partly also because of the proactive efforts of the local water company, OKOS.

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