Residual pollution has to be eliminated in former military and industrial territories

The Ministry of the Environment makes plans for eliminating residual pollution in former military and industrial territories. This is a complicated process that requires preliminary surveys. Therefore, a public procurement was organised to find a suitable consultant. Today, on 23 March, three tenders were received for the procurement.

There are several hundreds of sites in Estonia containing shale oil and oil products or other residual substances hazardous to human health and natural environment that have been either partially or completely abandoned. These sites may be dangerous to people, for example, through exposure to residual substances, through drinking water, groundwater or air.

The European Commission has allocated a sum of EUR 800,000 as non-refundable aid to Estonia for identifying the extent and hazardousness of residual pollution left in military and industrial territories since the times of the Soviet Union.

Residual pollution sites and objects with different functions in the past (boiler houses, former asphalt concrete plants, oil bases, railway depots, ports, etc) are included in this project. These sites and objects are located all over Estonia and belong to different owners – state authorities, private undertakings or local governments.

Therefore, elimination of residual pollution will be organised as a grouped project.

It may take at least two months until a contract is concluded with the consultant found by way of public procurement. The chosen consultant will start working in June of this year, and according to the initial plan, work should be finished by November 2006.

The project consultant has the following tasks: conducting the required surveys and preparing the required investment project and funding application for eliminating 32 sources of residual pollution located in former military and industrial territories.

The consultant has to conduct feasibility studies, including topogeodetic surveys, soil and groundwater analyses, setting up of monitoring wells and three-dimensional mapping of the spread of pollution. The consultant also has to conduct a financial analysis, an analysis of costs and benefits, an economic analysis and an assessment of environmental and health effects. Besides this, the consultant has to prepare procurement, funding and implementation plans, submit a funding application to the Cohesion Fund, carry out design work and prepare tender documents for carrying out construction activities on the basis of the “design and build” method.

In addition, the consultant has to prepare a national development plan for eliminating residual pollution and establish an organisational/institutional management and control system for implementing the grouped project.

A hazardous source of residual pollution is a polluted area of land or aquatic environment or a mass of hazardous residual substances polluting the environment that is a result of past activity (or inactivity). Hazardous sources of residual pollution constitute a real danger to local people and organic world.

Source: Estonian Ministry of the Environment