Awareness raising for citizens in St. Petersburg through a new tool
The project enables the creation of a service directed for the citizens of St Petersburg for the increase of environmental awareness. With the assistance of project partners, the Committee of Nature use, Environment Protection and Ecological Safety of the City of St Petersburg created and launched an ecological portal of the city at www.infoeco.ru
The project partners, City of Turku, VALONIA, Ecofellows Ltd, City of Kotka and UBC Environment and Sustainable Development Secretariat during the project not only shared their expertise on the similar websites but also improved the user friendliness and content of their own websites to better answer the needs of the target groups. The city of Kotka initiated a same process as the city of St Petersburg to build up its own website for citizens in the region.
The developed website for citizens does not have any access restrictions and creates good comparison possibilities for the environmental situations between St Petersburg and Finnish cities. First set of indicators of sustainable development has been carried out.
The project lasted to the end of February 2010. The project was co-financed by the Finnish Ministry of Environment and the project partners.
The comparison has been done between the City of St Petersburg, cities of Turku, Kotka and Tampere, member cities of Valonia and UBC.
The indicator Population reflects the number of people living in the city. The majority of the cities in the Baltic Sea Region are small or middle-sized. In comparison with them, the population in the city of St. Petersburg is in its own class.
2. Total area of the city
Total area of the city is the territory of the city including all land and water area.
The size of the total area in the UBC member cities in the Baltic Sea Region is in average about 151 425 km2. The total area of Southwest Finland stands out.
3. Water consumption
The indicator Water consumption shows the effectiveness and responsible usage of water and indirectly water purification, distribution, delivery etc connected to the environmental impact. Such a big gap between the minimum and maximum figures can be explained, not only by the different level of effectiveness of water consumption, but also by its different measurement as several cities reported on not only domestic water consumption, but also industrial one. Looking by the table it is obvious that water consumption in St.Petersburg exceeds twofold the average number of 142 liters per inhabitant per day.
|4. Number of days when the limit value of particulate matter (PM10) is exceeded 2008
The Indicator Number of days when the limit value of particulate matter (PM10) is exceeded depends on the industry and transport in the city. It is crucial when assessing the air quality. The standard to be aimed equals to 0 days per year that some cities, for example, Kotka manage to keep.
5. Private car ownership per 1000 inhabitants year 2008
The indicator Private car ownership indicates the number of cars per 1000 inhabitants in year 2008. This reflects the citizens’ need in own cars, indicates planning of the land use, available services and the need in public transport. According to the table the amount of cars per 1000 inhabitant is slightly higher in Kotka, Tampere and Turku than in St. Petersburg that is likely to be explained with the higher land area available per person.
6. Percentage of treated waste water in the city year 2008
The indicator Percentage of treated waste water in the city displays the impact of the city on the water system and connected with it the process of eutrophication.
According to the table Kotka, Tampere and Turku have a higher level of treated waste water in the city than St. Petersburg and cities/municipalities in Southwest Finland.
7. Percentage of recreational area per total area in the city centre year 2008
The indicator Percentage of recreational area per total area in the city centre reflects effectiveness and directions of development of land use and also diversity and convenience of the areas. It includes both land and water area. According to the table Turku has the biggest share of recreational area in the city center in comparison with other cities mentioned in the table.
8. Percentage of schools with Green Flag or some other environmental certificate year 2008
The Green flag certificate is an award in the Eco-Schools programme, an international initiative designed to encourage entire school to be active in regards to environment. It is a recognised award scheme that accredits schools that commit to continuously improve their environmental performance. It is also a learning resource that raises awareness of environmental and sustainable development issues through activities linked to subjects and areas in the curriculum. In the current comparison, the city of Tampere has the biggest number of such schools.
9. Percentage of nature protected areas of the total area of the city
Percentage of nature protected areas of the total area of the city witnesses the commitment of the cities to preserve nature, ecologically significant spaces and improve biodiversity. The highest percentage is on the territory of the city of Turku.
10. Percentage of air pollutions caused by transport (nox, PM10, O2)
The indicator Percentage of air pollutions caused by transport (nox, PM10, O2) is an important indicator of the air quality as transport-related air pollution harms human health and causes climate change and global warming. According to the table St. Petersburg has the biggest amount of these three pollutants in the air generated by transport that can be stipulated by a big amount of transport in St.Petersburg.
11. Number of oil spill accidents water and land year 2008
An oil spill is the release of a liquid petroleum hydrocarbon into the environment due to human activity, and is a form of pollution. The term often refers to marine oil spills, where oil is released into the ocean or coastal waters or can used in the relation of the land oil spills. According to the table St. Petersburg has the biggest amount of oil spills than can be explained with a big proportion of industries in St.Petersburg.
The region Southwest Finland consists of 28 municipalities in southwest Finland. The region’s capital city is Turku. In this survey VALONIA, service centre for sustainable development and energy of Southwest Finland, collected information about the region.
Valonia is a public organisation and it’s services cover a wide range of activities including thematic weeks and campaign events, counselling and advice services. Services are offered to municipalities, other public actors, citizens, consumers and households, companies and organizations and associations. Valonia is the coordinator of regional Agenda 21 action plan. There are altogether 19 (2009) municipalities of total 28 in Southwest Finland region that are participating in this action plan. Most services of Valonia are for participating municipalities but part of services covers all Southwest Finland. www.valonia.fi
Municipalities in Southwest Finland 1.1.2009
- Koski Tl
Underlined – Municipalities which are participating in regional Agenda 21 action plan (2009)
Union of the Baltic Cities (UBC) is a voluntary, proactive network mobilizing the shared potential of over 100 member cities for democratic, economic, social, cultural and environmentally sustainable development of the Baltic Sea Region. UBC is a Baltic Sea Regional co-operation and policy actor, a link between the cities, and practical project implementation network or organisation. UBC has thirteen thematic commissions. The UBC Commission on Environment is responsible for the Sustainability Action programme of the network organization. www.ubc-environment.net
Ecofellows Ltd. is a company formed to promote sustainable development. It is owned by the city of Tampere, Tampere Power and Tampere Regional Solid Waste Management. Ecofellows maintains a wide and strong network, co-operating closely with other enterprises, public organisations, authorities, scientific and educational institutions that all promote sustainable development. The company operates in three distinct sectors: the Centre of Urban environment Moreenia relating consumer matters, expert services to enterprises and communities, and various development projects carried out by the company.
The City of Kotka is located in the South-East Finland on the coast of the Baltic Sea, the Gulf of Finland, at the estuary of Kymi River. The City of Kotka is actively working for sustainability.