On March 27th hotel “Karelia” hosted an information seminar of a “Clean Ladoga” project, where experts presented the results of the first in 10 years comprehensive research of Ladoga Lake’s water resources and recommendations on the preservation of Ladoga’s biodiversity.
The researches put great emphasis on revelation of human impact level on Ladoga and its tributary rivers. According to Sergey Komulainen, a senior researcher in the Institute of biology of KarRC RAS, the analysis showed that agricultural facilities (croplands and stock breeding complexes) as well as inefficient or even out-of-service waste treatment facilities located in coastal areas have the most negative impact on the lake. Petr Lozovik from the Institute of Water Problems of the North has also underlined high level of influence exerted by actively developing trout farms.
Thus, the conducted researches identified the whole new complex of problems that should be resolved as soon as possible. This is why the group of Russian and Finnish experts prepared an extended list of recommendations on easing-off the human impact. This list includes a number of top-priority tasks such as
· establishment of a forest protective belt in a water conservation zone and transfer of agricultural facilities from this zone;
· regulation of further development of trout farms;
· construction of water treatment facilities for untreated sewage water as well as upgrade of existing facilities and their efficiency.
Moreover the researches will help to select the most toxic waste water treatment plants, develop feasibility studies and design estimate documentation for at least 4 communal objects and propose them for investments to private and state investors. Local communities will be actively involved as well: the project experts will hold a series of training seminars for both treatment facilities’ employees who will work with new equipment and entrepreneurs and representatives of local administrations responsible for the practical implementation of measures aimed at Ladoga’s pollution reduction.
The importance of solution of problems revealed by the project is noted not only by scientific community but the representatives of government and local authorities. The officials from the Ministry for land use and environmental protection, as well as from the Ministry for construction, housing and utility services and energy expressed readiness to support project partners’ initiatives and told about the work that is being implemented today.
Particular attention was paid to legislation. Polina Goldenberg, State inspector on control in the sphere of water objects use and protection, land use and environmental protection of Federal Service for Supervision in the Sphere of Natural Resource Use, presented the amendments to the Water Code and the Code of Administrative Offences came into force November 1, 2013. They are designed to fight unscrupulous entrepreneurs who untill recently benefited from paying the fine for violation of environmental legislation more than from elimination of disastrous consequences of their business activity.
One 2-year project is obviously unable to solve all identified problems that have been cumulating for decades. This is why the partners’ alliance has decided to continue this work in future, including the projects that will be implemented in the framework of European Partnership Instrument. But all the future project will definitely have a common goal: make the Ladoga shore a comfortable place to live for local people, an attractive place for tourists to come, and interesting for controlled fishery.