Nord Stream 2 AG, the developer of a natural gas pipeline through the Baltic Sea, took part in the 20th Baltic Sea Day international environmental forum.
The forum is held annually in St Petersburg, in cooperation with HELCOM (the Baltic Marine Environment Protection Commission - Helsinki Commission). Nord Stream 2 supports the forum as an important platform for discussion of environmental issues in the Baltic region.
This year, Nord Stream 2’s experts and partners presented the results of environmental research and conservation projects implemented in Russia as part of the Environmental and Community Initiatives (ECo-I) strategy. Developed specifically for the landfall in Russia, Nord Stream 2’s ECo-I strategy represents a holistic approach to reinstatement and compensation, biodiversity enhancement, community initiatives and local sponsorship activities. The strategyis an expression of the company’s commitment to responsible infrastructure development in the region.
At the round table on “Fisheries, Aquaculture and Conservation of Fish Stock”, the company experts presented a programme developed for monitoring salmon migration in the Gulf of Finland in cooperation with the Russian Federal Research Institute of Fisheries and Oceanography. The monitoring programme allowed scientists to gather data on seasonal salmon migration in the Baltic Sea and thereby optimise the construction schedule to account for critical periods for ichthyofauna. The experts also reported on the release of Atlantic salmon fry as part of the 2018 compensation program and plans for the upcoming season.
At the “Biodiversity Conservation in the Baltic Region” round table, experts from the St. Petersburg State University presented a study of the tourism load within the Kurgalsky reserve, performed with the company’s support. This is the first study of such a magnitude and methodological complexity ever to have been performed in a protected area within the Leningrad region. In addition to opinion polls, in-depth interviews with tourists and experts, and focus groups with stakeholders, the study also drew on digital anthropological-research methods.
The study identified key tourist sites, measured the intensity of the touristic flows and explored behavioural patterns. The findings are important for the development of a management plan for the Kurgalsky reserve and addressing the growing impact from tourism and recreational activities (for more information on the study, see: https://spbu.ru/press-center/press-relizy/eksperty-spbgu-predstavili-rezultaty-kompleksnogo-issledovaniya-turistskoy).
An international team of experts presented interim results from telemetry studies of Baltic ringed seals for the 2018-2019 season. The company has supported this project for over two years, providing regular updates to the expert community.
In honour of the forum’s 20th anniversary, Nord Stream 2 hosted a concert by the Baltic Sea Philharmonic Orchestra in the Throne Hall at the Catherine Palace. Nord Stream 2 is the main sponsor of this unique orchestra, which brings together musicians from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Russia and Sweden. Nord Stream 2’s engagement echoes the orchestra’s idea of cross-cultural teamwork and close collaboration across national frontiers. As part of their “Nordic Pulse” tour around the Baltic Sea, the orchestra’s talented young musicians performed a suite from Tchaikovsky’s Sleeping Beauty from memory.
In his welcoming speech, Dr Dirk von Ameln, Senior Advisor to the Chief Executive Officer at Nord Stream 2 and Chairman of the Board of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic Orchestra, said: “Neither music nor nature knows national boundaries. Much like Nord Stream 2 will connect different countries with safe energy infrastructure, music connects the hearts of those living around the Baltic. On the Baltic Sea Day, we are glad to make our contribution to the understanding and preservation of the region’s natural environment.”