Improving seabed conditions in a polluted harbour basin, Norway


Vibeke Riis

Division Director, Environment & Health – Norway/Nordics
T: +47 95 08 00 10
Tom Øyvind Jahren

Tom Jahren

Head of department Aquatic environment, Ecology and Sediment
T: +47 917 59 106

Services we provided

Ålesund municipality will start improving the seabed conditions in the city's harbour basin. Ramboll has been commissioned to undertake detailed engineering including mapping environmental and geotechnical conditions. 

Over several years, Ålesund municipality has conducted surveys on the polluted seabed, and the city's port is one of the Government's seventeen priority ports where clean-up is needed.

Historic pollution

Pollution from past activities is deposited in the seabed in many ports and fjord areas along the coast of Norway. These pollutants are primarily a threat to plants and animals in the sea, both through acute impact, but also through more long-term effects such as disturbances in reproduction and genetic material. Some types of pollutants are also passed on through the food chains in the sea and can end up in fish and shellfish that people eat.

Mapping the seabed

Ramboll will be responsible for detailed design, mapping of environmental conditions and geotechnical conditions. In addition, Ramboll will assist the municipality in applying for public permits for the implementation of the clean-up measures.

Operationalising the UN Sustainability Development Goals (SDGs)

“This is a prestigious assignment we look forward to embarking on. It is fantastic to be able to contribute to improving the seabed conditions in one of the state's highest priority clean-up areas. Through follow-up of the project, we will work from a sustainability perspective and the UN's SDGs.” says Vibeke Riis, Ramboll’s director of Environment & Health in Norway.

This means operationalising sustainability goals down to the project level through the planning, engineering and construction phases. Particularly important is the goal of reducing the risk of marine pollution (sustainability goal 14.1) by removing polluted sediments on the seabed.

Collaborating to find the best solutions

“Ålesund municipality is happy to have Ramboll on the team to clean up the polluted seabed in Aspevågen. The collaboration will ensure important expertise so that together we find the best solutions for life underwater in Aspevågen.” says Sol Slinning, project manager in Ålesund municipality.


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