Protected areas

Finland’s Biodiversity Action Plan comprises five actions for protected areas (actions 17–21). By the end of 2018, these were still being implemented – two actions were proceeding according to plan or had been completed, but three actions were needing a boost.

The foundation of state-owned protected areas has proceeded so that almost 70 per cent of the final goal of 700 000 hectares will most likely be achieved by the end of 2019. This figure represents the protection of areas that have previously been reserved or acquired for protection (action 17; needs a boost). 

Conservation effectiveness is meant to be improved, for example, through a research project examining the functioning of the conservation area network in a changing climate. In addition, the state of the Natura 2000 areas has largely been assessed, and the general assessment of the Natura network was performed in 2016–2017 (action 18; on track to completion).

The ecological functioning and connectivity of the Natura 2000 area network has been improved on state-owned land by protecting or otherwise denoting 10 000 hectares of new forest areas and 38 000 hectares of mires. In addition, the conservation of biodiverse areas and ecological connectivity has been listed as a binding priority in the national land use planning objectives (action 19; on track to completion).

The reserving of areas for protection in the land use plans at the regional and municipal levels has progressed slowly. The situation will be evaluated in 2018 and 2019 (action 20; needs a boost).

The existing protected areas have been classified in accordance with international criteria. The data has been submitted to the European CDDA and WDPA databases (action 21; completed)