Nitrogen discharges into surface waters from point sources

Updated: 23 Nov 2021
Next update: 1 Dec 2022

The nitrogen discharges into surface waters from point sources indicator describes the development of nitrogen discharges from point sources of industry, municipalities and fish farming since 1980.

Point sources, such as industry and municipal wastewater treatment plants, have succeeded in considerably reducing the flow of nutrients into water bodies since the 1980s. The development was particularly rapid in the 1990s when, for instance, nitrogen discharges from industry declined by 30%. The pace has slowed slightly in the 2000s, but discharges continue decreasing.

The burdening by industry and municipalities has been reduced by improving industrial processes and boosting wastewater treatment. Better feeding techniques and reduced fish production in Finland have contributed to smaller nutrient leakage from fish farming.