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4/30/2019 2:00 PM

RAINMAN Towards higher adaptive capacity in urban water management

The purpose of the RAINMAN project is to meet the challenges that climate change and urbanisation pose for the handling of surface and groundwater. The project focuses on the development of methods to reduce the load on the sewer and drainage network by preventing rainwater discharge into the wastewater sewers and by minimizing storm water flooding in built-up areas.

​In addition, the project will make it possible to map the most vulnerable groundwater bodies from the perspective of urbanisation and climate change.

In Lahti, the existing groundwater model is being updated to include data on climate and weather. New groundwater observation pipes are being installed and soil gravity measurements are being taken as part of the upgrade. The quality of the groundwater and the variability of the groundwater level are being closely monitored in a sample site. The updated groundwater model will be used to examine future changes in the groundwater level and groundwater discharge areas. Changes in the quality of the groundwater are monitored, particularly in areas with impurities that reduce the quality of groundwater.

In Lahti, the way in which the replacement of chloride with potassium formate in the season in which the ice is melting affects the chloride content of groundwater is being monitored. Any other possible effects of potassium formate use on the environment will also be examined at the same time.

The information gathered through the RAINMAN project will be incorporated into the Lahti groundwater protection plan, which will be updated as part of the project. The conservation plan consists of a concise report section and a spatial data set intended for public authorities.

Lahti and St. Petersburg in cooperation

The project's emphasis in regard to St. Petersburg is the handling storm water. This is intended to determine how rainwater can be directed away from urban areas via separate sewers and, thus, prevent the main sewage drains overflowing. The project will produce a hydraulic model for use in pilot regions, which will then benefit the areas of the city at greatest risk from the effects of global climate change.

Although the RAINMAN project has different foci in Lahti and St. Petersburg, a tremendous amount of work done has recently been done in Lahti in relation to the handling of storm water. As such, the project is a very important instrument for cooperation between cities, making it possible to share information, reflect on the challenges being faced, and to learn new approaches from each other.

The Geological Survey of Finland (GTK) is the main partner organisation for the project. In addition to the City of Lahti and GTK, the project also involves other Finnish stakeholders in the form of the Helsinki Region Environmental Services (HSY) and the City of Mikkeli. Russia is represented by Vodokanal St. Petersburg (the agency responsible for domestic water in St. Petersburg), Voeikov Main Geophysical Observatory, and the State Hydrological Institute.

RAINMAN is part of the South-East Finland – Russia CBC 2014 – 2020 cooperation programme. It is a three-year project with a total budget of EUR 940,000, of which Lahti is contributing EUR 100,000. The three-year project began in January 2019.

More info:
Riikka Mäyränpää, Water Protection Planner
+358 50 3836 498

Saara Vauramo, Environmental Director
+358 44 7161 585