Input of nutrients by the seven biggest rivers in the Baltic Sea region

To tackle the symptoms of eutrophication in the Baltic Sea, the member countries of the Helsinki Commission (HELCOM) have agreed to decrease the input of nutrients to the Baltic Sea. According to the recent HELCOM assessment (HELCOM 2018) the riverine inputs of total nitrogen and total phosphorus contribute about 80% and over 90% to the total input of these nutrients respectively. Therefore the nutrient input reduction targets are unachievable without adequate measures aimed at reducing the loads of the entire Baltic Sea catchment area. The seven biggest rivers (Daugava, Gota, Nemunas, Neva, Oder, Tornio and Vistula) cover 50% of the Baltic Sea catchment area and therefore it is important to evaluate the changes in the nutrient loads of those rivers.

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