Piloting a Nutrient Trading Scheme in the Central Baltic

P2 Sustainable use of common resources

2.4. Reduced nutrients, hazardous substances and toxins inflow into the Baltic Sea

Central Baltic

01.09.2015 - 28.02.2019

€2 068 104

€1 551 078

Project Summary:

The project NutriTrade aims at reducing nutrients in the Baltic Sea area by piloting a nutrient trading scheme in the Central Baltic region. The idea is to develop new cross-border innovative policy instruments for a cost-effective, cross-sector nutrient reduction measures in the Baltic Sea basin.

The project pilots a platform connecting nutrient removal sources with voluntary financiers willing to acquire nutrient offsets and neutralize their nutrient footprint. In the pilot scheme, several proven nutrient abatement measures including e.g. mussel farming, gypsum treatment of fields, and fishing of cyprinids are implemented, which result in phosphorus load reductions. The project develops assessment mechanisms to find and support innovative and proven nutrient reduction methods which have not yet become market-driven or integrated into governmental policies.

As a result of the project the lessons learned in the pilot scheme are used for analysing nutrient trading as a water policy instrument on a national level, and also for the analysis of a Baltic Sea wide inter-governmental nutrient trading. Based on these, NutriTrade will produce policy recommendations for the Baltic Sea region. The project is of high policy relevance for the Baltic Sea region and has been nominated as a flagship project of the EU Baltic Sea Region Strategy.

Lead Partner

John Nurmisen Säätiö

Country: FI

Partner budget: 678.726 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 509.045 EUR ERDF

Project Partners

Luonnonvarakeskus (Luke)

Country: FI

Partner budget: 250.000 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 187.500 EUR ERDF

Helsingin Yliopisto

Country: FI

Partner budget: 400.000 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 300.000 EUR ERDF

Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet (SLU)

Country: SE

Partner budget: 639.378 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 479.534 EUR ERDF

Anthesis Enveco AB

Country: SE

Partner budget: 100.000 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 75.000 EUR ERDF

Expected results

The main results of NutriTrade will be:
1. A functioning nutrient offset platform for the Baltic Sea. The experiences gathered from the voluntary scheme will be utilized for developing regulation based and inter-governmental trading.
2. A transparent framework for measuring cost efficiency (€/kg) of nutrient reduction efforts and identifying new innovative reduction methods. The framework can have a multitude of application areas within the Baltic Sea revival context.
3. A mechanism enabling companies, municipalities, associations, private citizens etc. to neutralize their nutrient footprint. Through NutriTrade citizens can channel their concern over the Baltic Sea into concrete and transparent nutrient reduction initiatives which improve their own living environment.
4. Concrete and measurable removal of phosphorus from the Baltic Sea of at least 50t/a through concrete measures listed under “Pilots”. After the full scale roll-out, annual trading volumes of several hundred tons annually are targeted.
5. A sustainable financing mechanism for innovations/measures which reduce nutrients from the Baltic Sea but have not yet become commercially viable or included in institutional financing frameworks (such as agri-environmental support). This will also increase private financing for water protection measures traditionally financed by the public sector.
6. Policy analysis and a roadmap on the future use of nutrient trading in water protection policy.

The project links to the result indicator by:

1) implementing and supporting pilot measures, which reduce up to 50 t/a of phosphorus already during the project.
2) establishing a mechanism (platform) for identifying, financing, implementing and verifying effective nutrient reduction measures in the future.
3) analyzing opportunities and challenges, and providing policy recommendations, for using joint implementation/nutrient trading in national and intergovernmental Baltic Sea protection efforts.