Expert Group on Sustainable Development – Baltic 21

Background & Mission

Background & Mission

Our background

Initiated by the Prime Ministers of the Baltic Sea countries in 1996, Baltic 21 is a macro-regional expression of the global Agenda 21 adopted by the United Nations “Earth Summit.” The term Baltic 21 tags the CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development as well as a network of partners from different levels and sectors, working together in projects and policy development for increased sustainability and resilience in the Baltic Sea Region.

Our mission

Our mission is to contribute actively towards advancing sustainable development in the Baltic Sea Region by coordinating goals and activities, and by serving as a forum for cooperation across borders and between stakeholder groups. This includes enhanced capacity building for sustainable development and strengthening knowledge exchange by sharing sustainable practices in relevant sectors.

As an Expert Group of the CBSS, our mission is to provide a platform for governments, organizations and communities who seek out new partnerships, while strengthen those already in existence. By acting as a bridge between a multitude of stakeholders from different levels of governance, we aim to make progress in transforming our part of the world into a resilient and green region.

For the period 2010-2015, the Baltic 21 Expert Group is implementing the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development, focuses on four strategic areas:

  • Climate change
  • Sustainable urban and rural development
  • Sustainable consumption and production
  • Innovation and education for sustainable development

Organization and responsibilities  

The Expert Group facilitates the implementation of the Council of the Baltic Sea States long-term priority “Environment & Sustainability”. It also fosters synergies and coherence among strategic partners, intergovernmental networks and other pan-Baltic organizations, like BASREC, VASAB, NCM and HELCOM. In addition, CBSS Baltic 21 provide structured input and policy recommendations to relevant work conducted by organizations like the EU, Northern Dimension, OSCE, OECD and United Nations.

As Leader of the Horizontal Action “Sustainable development” in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region Action, CBSS-Baltic 21 functions as the main cooperation platform for sustainable development in the Baltic Sea Region giving it a central role in further coherent cooperation and integration in the Baltic Sea Region in this field. The national representatives of the CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development are also acting in capacity of the Steering Committee of the EUSBSR HASD supported by National Focal Points.

The Expert Group reports to the steering body of the Council of the Baltic Sea States, the Committee of Senior Officials and meets at least twice every year. The Chair of the Expert Group rotates following the established patterns of the Presidency of the CBSS. 

Expert Group on Sustainable Development 


Flag Denmark Denmark (Danmark)

Contact: Sidsel Dyekjær 

Danish Environmental Protection Agency

Address: Strandgade 29, DK-1401 Copenhagen

Phone: +45 72 54 45 28 


Related website: Danish Environmental Protection Agency


Flag Estonia Estonia (Eesti)

Contact: Ülle Vaht (Expert Group Chair 2014 – 2015)

Councellor, Environmental Management Department, Ministry of the Environment

Address: Narva Rd. 7A, 15172 Tallinn

Phone: +3726262949


Related website: Ministry of the Environment


Flag Finland Finland (Suomi)

Contact: Kristina Pingoud

Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Counsellor, Baltic Sea Affairs
Department for Europe,Unit for Northern Europe

Address: Laivastokatu 22 H, Helsinki
P.O.Box 430, 00023 Government, Finland

Phone: +358 295 351 198


Related website: Ministry of Foreign Affairs Finland


Flag Germany Germany (Deutschland)

Contact: Martina Karbowski

Deputy Head of Division Cooperation with Central and Eastern European Countries and NIS, Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety

Address: Köthener Strasse 2-3, 10963 Berlin

Phone: +4930285504249


Related website: Federal Ministry for the Environment


 Iceland (ísland)

Contact: Danfríður Skarphéðinsdóttir

Head of Division, Sustainable Development and Nordic Affairs, Office of Policy and International Affairs, Ministry for the Environment

Address: Skuggasund 1, 150 REYKJAVIK

Phone: +3545458600


Related website: Ministry for the Environment


Flag Latvia Latvia (Latvija)

Contact: Ugis Zanders

Senior Expert
Strategy and sustainable development division
Coordination department
Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development

Address: Pelduiela 25, LV-1494 Riga

Phone: +371 66016590


Related website: Ministry for Environmental Protection and Regional Development


Flag Lithuania Lithuania (Lietuva)

Contact: to be appointed



Flag Norway Norway (Norge)

Contact: Herbert Kristoffersen

Senior Advisor, Secretariat for Sustainable Development, Ministry of Finance

Adress: Akersgt. 40 / Postboks 8008 Dep, 0030 Oslo

Phone: +47 22244519


Related website: Ministry of Finance


Flag Poland Poland (Polska)

Contact: Edyta Sysło 

Ministry of the Environment
Senior Expert,
Department of Sustainable Development

Adress: Wawelska str. 52/54
00-922 Warsaw

Phone: +48 22 57 92 853


Related website: Ministry of the Environment


Flag Russia Russia (Россия)

Contact: Alexey BAKHTOV

Senior Officer, Division of International Organizations, Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment


Phone: +7 (499) 254-56-61

Fax: +7 (499) 254-82-83/ 252-67-47


Related website: Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment


Flag Sweden Sweden (Sverige)

Contact: Anne-Cerise Nilsson

Deputy Director, Climate Division, Ministry of the Environment

Adress: Tegelbacken 2, 103 33 Stockholm, Sweden

Phone: +46 (0) 8-4054750


Related website: Ministry of the Environment



International organisations/networks


 Helsinki Commission (HELCOM)                    

Contact: Monika Stankiewicz

Executive Secretary HELCOM Secretariat

Address: Katajanokanlaituri 6b, FIN-00160 Helsinki

Phone: +358 207 412628


Related website: Helsinki Commission 


 CPMR Baltic Sea Commission                           

Contact: Åsa Bjering

Executive Secretary, Baltic Sea Commission Secretariat

Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions of Europe

Twitter CPMR_europe

CPMR Facebook page

Related website: CPMR Baltic Sea Commission


 Union of the Baltic Cities (UBC)                      

Contact: Björn Grönholm

Head of Secretariat, Environment and Agenda 21 Secretariat

Vanha Suurtori 7, FIN-20500 Turku

Phone: +358 2 262 3172


Related website: Union of the Baltic Cities


 Baltic Sea Region Spatial Planning Initiative (VASAB)        

Contact: Talis Linkaits

Head of VASAB Secretariat

Address: Elizabetes str.19, LV-1010 Riga

Phone: +371 67350628


Related website: Baltic Sea Region Spatial Planning Initiative



Contact: Christian Dymén

Research Fellow

Address: Nordregio, Box 1658, SE-111 86 Stockholm

Phone: +46 8 463 54 45


Related website: Nordregio


 Baltic Sea States Subregional Co-operation (BSSSC)

Contact: Volker Stampe

Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg
Ministry for Urban Development and Environment
Department for Legal Affairs and Shareholding Management
Section for Federal and European Affairs
– International Affairs “

Address: Neuenfelder Str. 19, 21109 Hamburg

Phone: +49 40 – 428 40 3431


Related website: Baltic Sea States Subregional Co-operation


 Baltic Local Agenda 21 Forum (BLA21F)        

Contact: Mr. Bjarne Rasmussen

Local Agenda 21 Secretariat; Coordinator of Baltic Local Agenda 21 Forum; Sustainable Development Manager Region Zealand

Address: Alléen 15, DK-4180 SORØE

Phone: +45 57 87 58 38


Related website: Baltic Local Agenda 21 Forum 


 Keep Baltic Tidy (KBT)

Contact: Jessica Ångström

Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation

Address: P.O. Box 4155, SE-102 64 Stockholm

Phone: +46 8 505 263 32


Related website: Keep Baltic Tidy 


logo Baltic Sea Tourism Commission

Contact: Martin Ahlberg


Address: C7O FIN-S Marknad&Kommunikation; Snickarbacken 2, 4-5 trappor SE-111 39 Stockholm

Phone: +46 (0)86672597


Related website: Baltic Sea Tourism Commission


logo Environment and School Initiatives (ENSI)

Contact: Christine Affolter

Head of Secretariat ENSI Coordinator CoDeS

Address: Steinen 57, 3534 Signau / Switzerland

Phone: +41 79 326 46 26


Related website: ENSI & CoDeS 



Research institutions


University of Greifswald, Institute of Geography and Geology                  

Contact: Betina Meliss

Project Coordinator

Address: Makarenkostraße 22, D-17487 Greifswald

Phone: + 49 3834 86 45 41


Related website: AGORA 2.0


University of Rostock Faculty of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences Institute of Land Use

Contact: Bettina Eichler-Löbermann

Scientific Advice and Secretary to the Task Force on Sustainable Agriculture

Address: Justus-von-Liebig-Weg 6, D-18059 Rostock

Phone: + 49 381 498 30 64


Related website: University of Rostock


Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences

Contact: to be appointed





Related website: Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences


Baltic University Programme Secretariat (BUP)

Contact: Matthew Kott

Acting Director, BUP Secretariat, Uppsala University

Address: Villavägen 16, 752 36 Uppsala

Phone:+46-18-471 18 40

Fax: +46-18-471 17 89


Related website: The Baltic University 



Financial Institutions


 European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)

Contact: Alistair Clark

Director of the Environment and Sustainability Department

Address: 1 Exchange Square London EC2A 2JN, UK

Phone: +44 171 338 7097

Fax: +44 171 338 6964


Related website: European Bank for Reconstruction and Development


 European Investment Bank (EIB)

Contact: Peter Carter

Associate Director, Head Environment and Social Office Projects Directorate

Address: 100, Boulevard Konrad Adenauer; L-1950 Luxembourg

Phone: +352 43 798 2557; +352 43 79 8 2565

Fax: +352 43 79 8 3494


Related website: European Investment Bank


 European Investment Bank (EIB)

Contact: Roland Randefelt

Environment Specialist

Address: 100, Boulevard Konrad Adenauer; L-1950 Luxembourg

Phone: +352 43 79 8 25 30

Fax: +352 43 79 8 3495


Related website: European Investment Bank


 Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO)

Contact: Karl-Johan Lehtinen

Senior manager environment affairs

Address: Fabianinkatu 34 P.O. Box 249 FIN-00171 Helsinki

Phone: +358 10 618003

Fax: +358 9 630 977

Related website: Nordic Environment Finance Corporation


 Nordic Investment Bank (NIB)

Contact: Johan Ljungberg

Head of Environmental Unit

Address: P.O. Box 249 FIN-00171 Helsinki

Phone: +358 10 618001

Fax: +358 9 1800 282


Related website: Nordic Investment Bank

Expert Group Meetings

12th meeting, 28th April 2015, Tallinn, Estonia

The second meeting under the Estonian CBSS chairmanship will discuss the final results of the Baltic 21 review and the way ahead to a new mandate for the Expert Group post 2015. In this respect the first draft results from the assessment study on the status of sustainable development in the Baltic Sea region will be introduced by Uppsala University, along with an internal review of the implementation of the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010 – 2015. In relation to the role of the expert group as the reference group for EUSBSR Horizontal Action Sustainable Development, the meeting will be arranged back to back with the 4th Round Table of the BSR Climate Change Dialogue Platform. 


11th meeting, 21 – 22 October 2014, Tallinn, Estonia

The first Expert Group meeting under the Estonian presidency was arranged as a lunch to lunch event discussing the new CBSS long term priority ‘Sustainable and Prosperpous region’ and its defined goals, along with new project ideas on local food markets, energy efficiency in buildings and waste management. Furthermore, there was also arranged a focus group discussion on the first findings and results of the CBSS-Baltic 21 review.

As the reference group to the EUSBSR Horizontal Action Sustainable Development the meeting also shared views on the on-going revision process of the EUSBSR Action Plan and its potential implications for HA Sustainable Development as well as the status of the  EUSBSR seed money projects, ClimUrban, Balloon and SmartCities.


10th meeting, 5th June 2014, Turku, Finland

9th meeting, 5th December 2013, Stockholm, Sweden

The 9th meeting of the EGSD was a one day event in December this year focussing mainly on the revision of the ToR for the Baltic 21 review, one of the main priorities of the Finnish chairmanship in Baltic 21. Furthermore, the EGSD welcomed the Baltic 21 Lighthouse and EUSBSR flagship project Bioenergy Promition for its second round table on the promotion of Bioenergy in the Baltic Sea Region. The project introduced and discussed the final policy recommendations of the project that will also be introduced to the BSPC – CBSS – BASREC seminar on Energy and Resource Efficiency on 4th March 214 in Helsinki Finalnd. In a second round table EGSD members met with national climate change adaptation experts from relevant ministries to discuss the potential eastblishement and cooperation framework of a transnational dialogue platform on climate change adaptation in the Baltic Sea Region. The event will be followed-up in a seond round table that is scheduled for April 2014.


8th Meeting, 5 – 6 September 2013, Stockholm, Sweden

The 8th meeting of the EGSD took place in Stockholm, Sweden under Finnish Chairmanship. Discussions concerned new project development where the Secretariat introduced the project REALS application to become a Lighthouse project. The meeting continued discussions from the 7th EGSD meeting on the study on Sustainable Development in BSR. With a view to close the project to policy loop of the Baltic 21 Lighthouse project BALTADAPT the meeting decided to organize a round-table back to back with the 9th EGSD meeting to facilitate the establishment of a BSR CCA dialogue platform. The final item was the review of Baltic 21, with view to select the members for the Evaluation Task Force.


7th meeting, 18-19 June 2013, Helsinki, Finland

The 7th meeting of the CBSS Expert Group was held in Helsinki, Finland. The meeting started with discussions on the implementation of the Baltic 21 Work plan, where it was decided that a desk study should be conducted to set the context for sustainable development in BSR. Another main point of discussions was the governance structure for Horizontal Action for Sustainable Development within the context of EUSBSR (steering group).  The Expert Group exchanged views on the state of play in the implementation of the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010-2015 and discussed main results and follow-up activities of B21 Lighthouse projects. A conclusion from this discussion was that the Secretariat will develop an overview of these projects and their relations to the CBSS and EUBSR Strategy. Other items for discussion were planned activities with partners in Russia and Belarus and the potential establishment of a BSR network on Education for Sustainable Development, BSRNESD. Last but not least the meeting focused on the introduction of the mid-term review of the Baltic 21, specifically looking at methodology, work plan and next steps.


6th meeting, 20-21 November 2012, Stockholm, Sweden

The 6th meeting of the CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development will take place on 20 – 21 November 2012 in Stockholm, Sweden. This meeting will be hosted at the premises of the Council of the Baltic Sea States Secretariat. It will be led by the current Baltic 21 Russian Chair and income new Head of Baltic 21 Unit, Senior Adviser Sustainable Development, Ms Krista Kampus. On the agenda of the meeting will be preparations for a mid-term review of the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development, post Rio+20, new project developments, incl. new Lighthouse projects, input to the revision of the EUSBSR Action Plan and ETC Financial Framework Programmes 2014 – 2020. Furthermore, there will be a round table workshop on sustainable renewable energy arranged by the Bioenergy Promotion II project. Invitations will be sent out in September. 

The Bioenergy Roundtable

A key activity within Bioenergy Promotion is to carry out a Roundtable in cooperation with Baltic 21, CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development. The first Bioenergy Roundtable was arranged in conjunction with the 6th meeting of the Expert Group on 20-21 November 2012 in Stockholm. .

The Bioenergy Roundtable aims at creating a dialogue between the Bioenergy Promotion project and the Baltic 21, CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development about how to move the development and dissemination of bioenergy systems forward in the Baltic Sea Region.
The Bioenergy Promotion project presented recommendations based on findings and conclusions from Bioenergy Promotion (2009-2011) and from Bioenergy Promotion 2.


5th meeting, 23 April 2012, Berlin, Germany

The fifth meeting of the CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development-Baltic 21 took place on 23 April 2012 in Berlin, Germany. The meeting is hosted by the current Chair of Baltic 21, the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety at their new premises in Berlin in conjunction with “Baltic Sea Days” 23-25 April 2012, an event organised by the German CBSS Presiedency 2011 – 2012. The meeting will focus on discussing policy recommendations and input to the 9th Baltic Sea States Summit, Rio+20 as well as the Annual Conference of the Baltic Sea States Subregional Co-operation, BSSSC and the Baltic Sea Region Energy Cooperation, BASREC.


4th meeting, 15 November 2011, Gdynia, Poland

The fourth meeting of the Expert Group on Sustainable Development – Baltic 21 takes place on 15 November 2011 in Gdynia, Poland. The Meeting will be hosted by the Baltic 21 Lighthouse project EcoRegion project and held in conjunction with its final conference. The Meeting will put an emphasis on project developments and discussions on Rio+20 process as well as the implementation of the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010-2015.


3rd meeting, 14-15 March 2011, Oslo, Norway

The third meeting of the Expert Group on Sustainable Development – Baltic 21 takes place on 14-15 March 2011 in Oslo, Norway. The meeting is hosted by the Norwegian Ministry of Finance. The meeting will discuss policy input to the EU Consultation on the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in 2012 as well as the 16th Ministerial Session of CBSS. On 15 March a joint meeting will be held between the Expert Group and the CBSS Committee of Senior Officials.


2nd meeting, 1 – 3 December 2013, Berlin, Germany

The second meeting of the Expert Group on Sustainable Development – Baltic 21 takes place on 1-3 December 2010 in Berlin, Germany. The meeting is hosted by the Germany Ministries for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. Main issues of the meeting are the discussion of revised criteria for Lighthouse projects, decisions on new project receiving Lighthouse status and updating of the Baltic 21 promotional material.


1st meeting: 13-14 April 2010, Vilnius, Lithuania

The first meeting of the Expert Group on Sustainable Development – Baltic 21 took place on 13-14 April 2010 in Vilnius, Lithuania. The meeting was hosted by the Lithuanian Ministry of the Environment. Main issue of the meeting was the discussion of the new Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010-2015 “Actions for Sustainable Development around the Baltic Sea”.

Summary of activities during the Estonian Presidency 2014/ 2015

In the summer of 2014 CBSS changed presidency from Finland to Estonia, and decided on three new long-term activities, one of them Sustainable and Prosperous Region. With this decision the Council acknowledged the Expert Group on Sustainable Development for its previous work in implementing the CBSS Strategy on Sustainable Development 2010 – 2015, and provided new recommendations for the future. The Council calls for the Expert Group on Sustainable Development, Baltic 21, to work on a new sustainable development agenda for the BSR post- 2015, as well as to proceed with activities relating to the Climate Change Adaptation Strategy for the Baltic Sea region and facilitating green economy, energy efficiency, sustainable production and consumption in the region.

Meetings of the Expert Group of Sustainable Development and Thematic Focus

During the Estonian presidency the Expert Group of Sustainable Development (EGSD) gathered for two meetings, the 11th meeting was held 21th- 22th October 2014 and the 12th meeting was held 28 April in Tallinn 2015.

The EGSD meetings thematically focused on:

Improving the coordination of sustainable development in the Baltic Sea Region (BSR) by:

  • Implementing the Baltic 21 review process
  • Initiating and following-up on the assessment study “Assessing the status of sustainable development in the Baltic Sea Region: a macro- regional perspective”, carried out by the Baltic University Program Secretariat as a part of Uppsala Centre for Sustainable Development at Uppsala University.

Climate adaptation and low emission development by:

  • Facilitating the BSR Climate dialogue platform with two round table meetings in 2014, further implementing the Baltic Sea region climate adaptation strategy and action plan.
  • Organising a two module Baltic Leadership Programme on Sustainable Development/ Low Carbon Economy in the fall of 2014. Continuing the momentum, a BLP follow-up low emission project workshop was organised in spring 2015.
  • Supporting the EUSBSR coordination and review process leading to a revision of HA Sustainable Development into HA Climate to be led by CBSS-Baltic Secretariat.

For more information on the EGSD click here.

From Horizontal Action Sustainable Development to HA Climate

Since March 2013 CBSS Baltic 21 Secretariat has been leading Horizontal Action Sustainable Development of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region (EUSBSR).  But for the second time since its launch in 2009, the Action Plan of the EUSBSR has been under revision in spring 2015.

As a result of the lessons learnt from one year implementation of Horizontal Action Sustainable Development, it was decided to focus Horizontal Action´s work more onto Climate change. Therefore HA has been renamed into Horizontal Action Climate, led by CBSS-Baltic 21. Former co-coordinator of the Horizontal Action ‘Sustainable’, Nordic Council of Ministers is now integrated in the strategy with an own policy area on Bio-economy. The new revised EUSBSR Action plan will be launched during the 6th Annual Forum of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea region on 15 – 16 June 2015 in Jurmala, Latvia.

The HA Climate will implement two main actions 1) low emissions development and 2) climate adaptation

Overall the action aims at:

  • Facilitating integrative cross-sectorial policy discussions and alignment of policies, including mainstreaming of climate change into sector policies
  • Promotion of low emission and climate resilient development
  • Promoting regional cooperation in creating and empowering the EU climate and energy policy development
  • Promoting sustainable production and consumption-oriented measures

In the light of the revision process, stakeholders are already actively working on the development of new flagships under the Horizontal Action Climate.

For more information on EU Strategy on the Baltic Sea Region, click here.

EUSBSR Seed Money Projects

During the Estonian Presidency 2014/2015 the following projects where approved for seed money by the EUSBSR seed money facility, supported by Horizontal Action Sustainable Development/ Climate:

  • Baltic Urban Forum on Smart Cities, BUF aiming at strengthen the innovation capacities of BSR local authorities and related innovation actors for the implementation of sustainable urban development by providing the model and tools for smart city profiling and early dialogue throughout the BSR.
  • ClimUrban the project is developing new approaches to urban flood management to decrease discharge of hazardous substances into the Baltic Sea.
  • Balloon developing low carbon economy policies for the Baltic Sea region countries.

Baltic Sea region climate dialogue

As part of the activities under Horizontal Action Sustainable Development, CBSS-Baltic 21 in 2014 facilitated the biannual meetings of the BSR climate change dialogue platform and their round tables.

The 3th Round Table of the Baltic Sea Region Climate Dialogue took place on 12th November 2014, whereas the 4th Round Table of the Baltic Sea Region Climate Dialogue took place on the 29th April 2015. Both of the events were set to Tallinn, and were hosted by the Estonian Ministry of the Environment.

During the Estonian presidency the round tables of the Baltic Sea Region Climate Dialogue have especially drawn on current processes from the region, such as the developments of national adaptation strategies in Estonia, Sweden, Poland and Latvia. In addition the round tables, with representatives from CBSS member countries, as well as European Environment Agency (EEA), Baltic Earth Programme, and VASAB, have especially focused on areas of transnational cooperation in climate change in the BSR. Towards this end, the round tables have initiated the development of a knowledge and information sharing webpage for the BSR, the so called Climate Inventory that will feed regular information to the BSR sub-section of the EU Climate-Adapt website and database.

To read more on EU Climate-Adapt, click here. For more information on the 4th round table of the BSR climate change dialogue platform, click here.

Ongoing Baltic 21 Lighthouse projects

EFFECT – the dialogue platform on energy and resource efficiency – was officially launched in November 2012 and is scheduled to be concluded in August 2015. The main aim of the project is to map, communicate, foster and learn from good practice solutions on eco- efficiency in the Baltic Sea region. So far two main reports have been finalised and a third one is under development to be published before summer.

The 4th meeting of the EFFECT project partnership took place in Jurmala, Latvia, on 16th October, while the 5th meeting was held 10-11th December in Copenhagen, Denmark. Both project meetings were designed as main project development workshops. The partnership plans to submit a main project application to the 2nd call of the INTERREG Baltic Sea region programme later this fall.

Cooperation with Russia and Belarus

For the last time Baltic 21 received extra contribution for cooperation with Russian and Belarusian civil society actors on Baltic 21 projects and activities. As a result, in 2014, two projects were financed; LearnWater and FOOD. The FOOD project resulted in the development of a concept note to the first call of the INTERREG Baltic Sea region programme with the working title LOCAL, with the main aim at fostering community supported agriculture systems across the Baltic Sea region.

For more information on CBSS- Baltic 21 activities in Russia and Belarus, click here.

Main events organised or attended by Baltic 21

International Day ‘Baltic Sea Week’

The Estonian Presidency in CBSS and chairmanship in Baltic 21 kicked-off with an international event during the first Baltic Sea Week at Sweden’s largest political week – Almedalen in 1st July 2015 in Gotland, Sweden. The ‘International Day’ was arranged as an integrated part of ‘Baltic Sea Week’, initiated by Forum Östersjön and Uppsala University/ Campus Gotland.

The one day event raised awareness on the environmental status of the Baltic Sea as well as show-cased and discussed cross-border cooperation to save the Baltic Sea waters, while ensuring prosperous economies and promoting sustainable development on land.  Furthermore, the event provided a good opportunity to highlight some of the main policy actions at present with HA Sustainable Development EUSBSR, as well as to discuss the added value of cross-border cooperation in transforming the Baltic Sea region into a competitive, low-carbon economy while ensuring sustainable development and inclusive growth.

For more information on the event, click here.

Baltic Leadership programme Low carbon development, module 1 & 2

In the fall of 2014 the CBSS- Baltic 21 in partnership with the Swedish institute, organised a two module training course in European project making in the field of Low Carbon Economy focusing on resource efficiency. The first part of the course took place in Stockholm, Sweden, on 29 September – 3 October 2014 and the second part in Brussels, Belgium, on 24 – 28 November 2014.

Each module consisted of one-week training sessions offered to future leaders of transnational cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region, with 25 selected participants from various national authorities, NGO´s or private organisations actively working on resource efficiency in sectors/ fields related to i.e. sustainable bioenergy, land use and waste management. The training course included general leadership training, capacity building in project management and knowledge of European project making and project funding.

The event was funded by Swedish Institute as a Baltic Leadership programme.

CBSS ‘Climate Weeks’

From 14th April to 15th May 2015 the CBSS implemented ‘CBSS Climate Weeks’ aimed at raising awareness, increasing capacity on climate change in the Baltic Sea Region and promoting adaptation and mitigation actions across Europe’s first macro-region. The initiative was an umbrella for a number of events and activities:

  • 2nd stakeholder event EFFECT – BSR Dialogue Platform in Energy and Resource Efficiency
  • Low Carbon projects development workshop – follow-up Baltic Leadership Programme ‘Sustainable Development’
  • Efficient use of resources – session at the 3rd AgroForum Mare Balticum, Tartu, Estonia
  • Lecturing session for Master and Post-Doc students of natural sciences at Lund University, Center Environmental and Climate research
  • 12th meeting of the CBSS Expert Group on Sustainable Development, Baltic 21/ Steering Group HA Sustainable Development with focus on revision of the EUSBSR Action Plan and including new Horizontal Action Climate
  • 4th Round Table – BSR Climate Dialogue Platform, Tallinn, Estonia
  • Baltic Sea Session at European Climate Change Adaptation Conference, ECCA 2015, Copenhagen, Denmark

Agroforum Mare Balticum

On 14-16 April 2015, the CBSS Baltic 21, together with the Estonian Ministry of Agriculture and the Estonian University of Life Sciences, co-organized the AgroForum Mare Balticum conference in Tartu, Estonia. The conference focused on food and energy sustainability with special emphasis on soil sustainability, resource efficiency and food quality in agricultural production.

The CBSS-Baltic 21 was represented by Ado Lõhmus, Vice-Chancellor at the Ministry of the Environment of Estonia, who highlighted in his speech that growing importance of bioenergy in regional energy systems. Among other keynote speakers was Eugenia Serova, Director of Rural Infrastructure and Agro-Industries Division of FAO, and Franck Jésus, Head of the Environment Division at the Trade and Agriculture Directorate of OECD.

As integrated workshop of the AgroForum Mare Balticum, CBSS-Baltic 21 as project leader of the EUSBSR flagship and Baltic 21 Lighthouse project ‘BSR dialogue platform on energy and resource efficiency, EFFECT’, organised a session on Efficient Use of Resources.

Moderated by Johanna Stål, Editor in Chief &  co-founder of the Swedish sustainable lifestyle magazine Camino Magazine, the session focused particularly on improving efficient use of resources in agriculture, ambitions and limitations for organic crop-production, as well as resource use in the food, energy and water nexus. Keynotes were given by Maria Osbeck, Research Fellow, Stockholm Environment institute (SEI), Ola Pettersson, Senior Project Leader, Swedish Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Engineering, Thomas Kätterer, Professor in Ecosystem Ecology, Swedish University of Agricultural Science, and Peter Wallenberg, Expert and project leader, Federation of Swedish Farmers.

For more information on the session, click here.

Low Carbon projects workshop as a follow up to BLP

In order to keep the momentum of the previous BLP and to secure the viability of the network, CBSS-Baltic 21 organised a follow-up workshop of the Baltic Leadership Programme – Sustainable Development/ Low Carbon Economy, on the 15 – 16 April 2015 in Tartu, Estonia.

The purpose of the event was to offer facilitated sessions where the participants could explore and exchange more concrete opportunities for cooperation within the network. Participants comprised BLP Low Carbon network partners, additional relevant organizations from Denmark, Finland and Germany, partners and stakeholders of on-going/ currently developing projects in the field of low carbon economy in the Baltic Sea region like EFFECT, Smart cities, Balloon; RECO and LOCAL and other organizations from across the region, including Russia and Eastern partnership countries with relevance to and interest in concrete project ideas.

The workshop was implemented back to back with the ‘AgroForum Mare Balticum’, as well as linked to the 2nd stakeholder meeting of the BSR Dialogue platform on energy and resource efficiency – EFFECT.

Click here for further information on the Low Carbon project workshop. For more reflections on the AgroForum and the Low Carbon project workshop, click here.

Baltic Sea Session at the 2nd European Climate Change Adaptation Conference, ECCA 2015

For the Second European Climate Change Adaptation Conference in Denmark on the 14th may 2015, CBSS is organised a 2 hours session on `Adapting the Baltic Sea region to a changing climate’.

The session gave an insight in the development process of the National Adaptation strategy for Estonia and Sweden,the development of the climate adaptation strategy for St Petersburg, and Low Carbon Policy development in the Baltic Sea region. CBSS- Baltic 21 also reflected on the transnational cooperation process on adaptation in the Baltic Sea region within the framework of the EU Baltic Sea Region strategy a part of Horizontal Action Sustainable Development (HA Sustainable).

Baltic 21 activities at the conference also included a panel discussion at the launch event of the 2nd assessment of climate change in the Baltic Sea region, BACC II report 2009 – 2014 by the Baltic Earth Programme The purpose of the first BACC assessment (BACC) is to provide the scientific community with an assessment of ongoing climate variations in the Baltic Basin based on the latest available data.

For more information on ECCA, click here.