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Est-Lat project GURINIMAS

GURINIMAS is an Estonia-Latvia Interreg project (Integrated Nitrogen Management System for the Gulf of Riga).  The project contributes to the implementation of the EUBSRS priority area “NUTRI - Reducing nutrient inputs to the sea to acceptable levels” and the achievement of the EUBSRS objective “Save the Sea”. 



Background of the project

The water quality of the Gulf of Riga is impacted by economic activities both in Estonia as well as in Latvia. The good status for the gulf, incl. coastal waters is not yet achieved because of the excessive nutrients in the water body. Nitrogen provides lots of benefits as for food production and industrial products, e.g. fertilisers. It is also the unwanted side product in case of the nitrogen emissions to the air or discharges to the water.

Excessive nitrogen loads coming from many land-based sources, within and outside the catchment area of the Baltic Sea Region states, is one of the main causes of the eutrophication of the Baltic Sea. Excess nitrogen have effects not only to water systems, but also to terrestrial systems and atmosphere also expressed e.g. by ozone induced injury to crops, acidification and eutrophication effects on forest, soils and freshwater aquatic systems, leaching, eutrophication and hypoxia in coastal and lake ecosystems, etc.

Measures to cut the nitrogen load have been traditionally targeted to agricultural, industrial and energy sectors and urban areas that are the main sources of nitrogen in the Baltic Sea catchment area. Currently it has been acknowledged the need to address in an integrated way the whole range of N sources and pathways which can have significant eutrophication impacts such as forestry, aquaculture, fur farming, transport, including shipping etc. The movement of nitrogen from one system to another can be described as a cascade where part of the N accumulates or lost through denitrification within a system and the rest transfers to the next system with a certain time lag.


GURINIMAS on Eesti-Läti Interreg programmist rahastatav projekt "Liivi lahe lämmastiku haldamise integreeritud süsteem", mis kestab 01.04.2017 kuni 30.09.2019. Projekti eesmärgiks on lämmastiku koormuse vähendamine Liivi lahele koostöös Eesti ja Läti ameti- ja teadusasutustega. Lämmastiku haldamise integreeritud süsteem hõlmab lämmastikutsükli põhjalikku analüüsi ja Liivi lahe piirkonna riskipiirkondade määratlemist, kus võtta vajalikke meetmeid. Projektis arendatav uus integreeritud lämmastiku juhtimissüsteem annab osalevatele riikidele - Eestile ja Lätile - ühtlustatud raamistiku, mida hiljem rakendavad Eesti ja Läti ametiasutused.

Projekti juhtpartneriks on Eesti Keskkonnaministeerium, lisaks osalevad Tallinna Tehnikaülikool, Läti Keskkonna Geoloogia- ja Meteoroloogiakeskus, Läti Riiklik Metsanduse Instituut "Silava", Läti Hüdroloogia Instituut ja Läti Põllumajandusülikool.


The objective of the project

The objective of the project is to develop an integrated nitrogen management system for the Gulf of Riga in close cooperation between Estonian and Latvian authorities and research institutions. The integrated nitrogen management system involves economy wide inventory of the nitrogen cycle and definition of the risk areas in the Gulf of Riga catchment where to act. This means the development and implementation of the model that follows the Impact-Pathway-Source approach to propose the most cost-efficient and effective measures for increasing the efficiency of use of N and reducing N losses. The new Integrated Nitrogen Management system, to be developed in current Project, will provide a harmonised framework for participating states – Estonia and Latvia, to be implemented afterwards by Estonia and Latvian authorities. The implementation will be based on the existing river basin management plans and marine strategies and in frames of the existing bilateral and regional cooperation arrangements.

Main activities of the project

  1. Development of methodology, to analyse the OECD research methodology and to develop analysis model suitable for Baltic Sea area
  2. Analysis of data, to gather data from relevant Estonian and Latvian institutions, to model data according to the agreed methodology and to evaluate and interpret research results by experts.
  3. Development of GURINIMAS and Dissemination of Results, to development of integrated nitrogen management system (GURINIMAS) targeted to reduce nitrogen load in Gulf of Riga and to disseminate the results of the project to target groups and stakeholders.

The budget

The Estonia-Latvia programme contributes EUR 363 196,50 EUR and partners' self-contribution is EUR 64 093,50.


Overview of reactive nitrogen flows in Latvia and Estonia

GURINIMAS: Integrated nitrogen management system for Gulf of Riga







Implementation of the project


26th of June 2017 the project kick off meeting in Riga

The aim of the partners’ meeting was to give a start to the project. The meeting took place in the Latvijas Vides, ģeoloģijas un meteoroloģijas centrs in Riga.

20th of October 2017 the 2nd Project Steering Group meeting in Pärnu

10th of January 2018 the 3rd Project Steering Group meeting in Riga

The 3rd meeting of Project Steering Group focused on the progress made in the 1st and 2nd reporting period (April-July and August-November 2017) and tasks for the next period (December 2017 - March 2018).

19th of April 2018 the 4th Project Steering Group meeting in Pärnu

The 4th meeting of Project Steering Group focused on the progress made in the 3rd reporting period (December 2017 - March 2018) and detailed planning of the activities for the 4th period (April - July 2018).

20th of June 2018 the Workshop in Sigulda

20th of June 2018 Workshop assembled Project Partners in order to introduce of nitrogen budget calculations and to clarify issues.  Partners agreed the developed format and structure of Report on Data Analysis and time schedule for individual and joint work with the development of chapters of the research report. 

Workshops for Project Partners were 7th of September 2018 in Riga and 9th of October 2018 in Pärnu

Project Partners participated in workshops in order to develop report on Data Analysis (WP T2).

8th of November 2018 was the 5th Project Steering Group meeting in Riga

Workshops for Project Partners were 5th of December 2018 and 27th of February 2019 in Jurmala

Project Partners participated in both workshops in order to discuss about content of the GURINIMAS final document (WP T3) and analyse of the research report (Reactive nitrogen flow by pools in Latvia and in Estonia).

5th of April 2019 took place the 6th Project Steering Group meeting in Pärnu

Workshops for Project Partners were 5th of April 2019 in Pärnu and 17th of May 2019 in Jurmala

Regional stakeholder seminars

Seminar on 10.01.2018 in Riga:


Seminar on 19.01.2018 in Pärnu:


Second seminar on 06.11.2018 in Pärnu:


Second seminar on 08.11.2018 in Riga:


Third seminar on 19.06.2019 in Pärnu:


Third seminar on 20.06.2019 in Riga: 






Project partners


Important project documents for the project partners


     Gulf of Riga. Author: I.Volk

Disclaimer: This website reflects the views of the author. The managing authority of the programme is not liable for how this information may be used.
09.04.2020 - 12:34PDF icon report_on_activity_3.1_in_latvian.pdf1.47 MBpdf
09.04.2020 - 12:34PDF icon report_on_activity_3.1_in_estonian.pdf1.41 MBpdf
Last updated: 9 April 2020

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