On November 24, activists of the Friends of the Baltic organization, together with teachers-public water observers from Vyborg made a water quality test of Buslovka river in Luzhaika village, Vyborg district. Although this is a rather late time for field trips, we had a serious reason for this. We received a message from Oksana Uryadnikova, chairwoman of Luzhayka village. She said that residents complain about the poor quality of tap water in the village: it is reddish and has suspended matter, and after using water, an unpleasant sticky film remains on the skin. They fixed uncontrolled wastewater discharge into the Buslovka river, the tributary of the Seleznevka river. Oksana provided a photo and video recording of this situation. We could not ignore this appeal and decided to visit Luzhaika: to talk with locals, to take water express tests and to draw maximum attention to the situation. Seleznevka is an object of high attention for the Friends of the Baltic organization, because it is a transboundary river and the object of observation within the framework of Russian-Finnish cross-border cooperation project "Water meet people - learn, act, influence" (SEVIRA).

Friends of the Baltic and Ecocentrum have organized November 6-7 the round table Environmental conditions of water bodies of the Leningrad region: solutions for the Vyborg district". The purposes of the event were the presentation of the river quality results of projects to the administration and locals, discussion of potential sources of pollution, and the necessary measures for its reduction. The same days our group made field expeditions.The working group investigated the quality of water in springs and small rivers in the Vyborg district. This field trip was held within the framework of the project "Water meet people - learn, act, influence" (SEVIRA), the project "Clean springs - clean rivers - healthy Baltic - healthy people", supported by the Presidential Grants Fund, and within the Water Program of the Coalition Clean Baltic.

2In 2020, the annual interregional “Eco-monitoring of rivers and coasts of the Gulf of Finland and the environment” conference took place the 20th time. It combined its anniversary with an atypical format: for the first time in twenty years, the conference was held online (due to the sanitary and epidemiological situation with COVID-19). The event was organized by the non-profit organization “Friends of the Baltic” and the Center of additional education named Palace of Creativity at the Voznesensky Bridge.

On September 24, a face-to-face training-seminar for teachers and volunteers took place in St. Petersburg. This annual seminar about projects and programs of the Friends of the Baltic traditionally takes place at the beginning of the academic year. This year we had an opportunity to thanks to enlarge the scale of participation up to 45 people due to support of the transboundary cooperation project SEVIRA «Water meets people: learn, act & influence».

On September 10, experts from ecological organization Friends of the Baltic, Ecocentrum Ltd, and North-West PGO JSC (Rosgeologia Holding) were the central part of the press conference held at the INTERFAX news agency. Experts spoke about the research of rivers and springs of the Leningrad Region under «Water meets people: learn, act & influence» (SEVIRA) project and «Clean Springs - Healthy Baltic» project, supported by the Presidential Grants Fund.


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