The objective of the Balthazar project was to assess the potential sources of nutrient loading from all types of large animal farms in the Kaliningrad and Leningrad regions and to perform a risk assessment of nutrient leaching from the livestock farms into the Baltic Sea. Also the current agricultural waste management regime was to be assessed including both on-farm manure handling practices and the regulatory framework of waste management.
Finally proposals on potential pilot cases to start solving the problems and to diminish the risks posed by the most critical sites were made based on information produced in all preceding phases of the project.The risk assessment was carried out in several stages. First, the study areas were examined and delineated based on characteristics assumed to affect nutrient transport, such as soil erosion, landscape characteristics and retention in water bodies. Second, the animal production units were ranked in terms of their risk of contributing nutrient loading on the basis on their production line and animal numbers.
It is estimated that a total of 9,600 t/y of manure phosphorus was produced by the 208 animal farms in the Leningrad and Kaliningrad regions in 2008. The animal farms were sorted on the grounds of their phosphorus production, and the 26 largest contributors were selected to a hot spots list. Combined they were responsible for 72% of the manure phosphorus, i.e. 6,900 t/y.
Twenty of these hot spots farms were located in the Leningrad region and six in the Kaliningrad region. Third, the nutrient transport risk of the selected 26 farms i.e. those having the highest source potential, was examined using a GIS analysis. Finally, the information obtained from the previous stages was combined and an expert judgment was used for further prioritization of the farms listed.
City of St Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast (region)In year 2008 there were 161 farms in Leningrad region. More than 20 million heads of poultry in the total of 16 poultry farms were located in the Leningrad region, five of which contributed over 15 million heads. As for the pig farms, there were nine large farms (with more than 750 pigs) housing 157,000 animals. The largest pig farm in the Leningrad region alone housed 56,000 heads. Finally, there were 136 cattle farms (~172,000 heads) in the Leningrad region.
Hot Spot farmsThe observations and measurements done during the field trips (this project and the PRIMER-project) enable to assign those farms, which are clearly loading the watercourses. Among those "high risk" farms are in the Leningrad region: JSC Rurik Agro, PF Nevskaya, PF Roskar, PF Udarnik, PF Lomonosovskaya, PF Sinyavinskaya, and OAO Rassvet. The leaching of nutrients is visible and it clearly affects the water quality in the rivers downstream of the manure heaps of those enterprises. Leakage of nutrients was also confirmed in case of Novyi Svet, PF Russko-Vysotskaya, and JSC Bor. The manure reservoirs of the PF Primorskaya are about to overflow, therefore leaching may increase in near future, even though it is has been low until recently. St Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast hot spot farms.
Interactive maps of data about farms are located at the HELCOM Map and Data Service under Pollution -> Sources -> BALTHAZAR project -> BALTHAZAR Farms".
Screening Results Interactive maps of data about farms screening results are located at the HELCOM Map and Data Service under Pollution -> Sources -> BALTHAZAR project -> BALTHAZAR Farms screening results N and BALTHAZAR Farms screening results P". Kalingrad Oblast (region)In year 2008 there were 47 farms in the Kaliningrad region. There were two poultry farms, which housed about 1.8 million heads. In addition to these two farms, a large poultry factory (Kaliningradskaya) is situated in Kaliningrad region but was not operating at the time of the study. As for the pig farms there were seven farms housing some 57,000 animals and there were 33 cattle farms (~28,000 heads) in the Kaliningrad region.
Hot spot farms in Kaliningrad regionOn the grounds of the water quality survey (sampling) only two enterprises in the Kaliningrad region, OOO BaltZanGas-Nefteorgsintez and OOO TPK Baltptitseprom, could clearly be classified as high risk farms, if the rise of nutrient concentrations cannot be related to the sewage waters of scattered settlements. In this respect the report by local experts does not give conclusive answers. Hot spot farms in Kaliningrad Oblast.Interactive maps of data about farms are located at the HELCOM Map and Data Service under Pollution -> Sources -> BALTHAZAR project -> BALTHAZAR farms".
Interactive maps of data about farms screening results are located at the HELCOM Map and Data Service under Pollution ->
Sources -> BALTHAZAR project -> BALTHAZAR Farms screening results N and BALTHAZAR Farms screening results P".
Manure handling plans and environmental requirements on pilot farms