Project plans introduced in St. Petersburg Initiative (SPI) meeting in Moscow
St. Petersburg Initiative (SPI) was established at Baltic Sea Forum in St. Petersburg in April 2013 to bring private businesses, especially from Russia to the work for the Baltic Sea. The first proper cavalcade of project plans within SPI took place in Moscow 20.-21.11.2013.
The SPI consists, inter alia, from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of Russia, Gazprom, Nord Stream, Carlsberg, Vodokanal of St. Petersburg, Helcom, European Comission and BSAG. On an international level SPI is supported by both the Russian Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and the Russian Foreign Ministry. BSAG is both in the advisory board and in the secretariat of the Initiative.
BSAG brought to this SPI meeting actors connected to Clean and Safe Maritime Traffic. Among other things presented were the joint project by UNIDO and Carlsberg to improve the cultivation and water systems of Baltika Brewery. The major project aims for environmental friendly cultivation of barley and the improvement of water quality in the Leningrad Oblast area. The Baltic Sea Commitment by Vodokanal of St.Petersburg to develop the waste water treatment in the areas of Leningrad oblast and Carelia, has also an important role in the Initiative.
To hasten the work, subcommittees for themes such as hazardous substances, eutrophication and international contacts were appointed. BSAG leads the international contacts subcommittee in co-operation with Eurofacts Ltd.
Besides the discussions on the ongoing and planned projects, it was stated that SPI has international support. Among others, the Executive Secretary of HELCOM, Monika Stankiewicz, took part in the meeting and supported the Initiative as a tool in fulfilling the Baltic Sea Action Plan by Helcom.
In the concurrent meeting of the Russian Security Council, President Putin gave strong support and instructions on the action for Russia to fulfill the international obligations in environmental issues, also regarding the Baltic Sea.
The next meeting of the St. Petersburg Initiative takes place in St. Petersburg in February. In Moscow there will be a meeting under the theme of Clean and Safe Maritime Traffic in April.