Spatial plan for Estonia's maritime area focuses on new uses

  • 2020-02-17
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – The focus of the spatial plan for the Estonian maritime area to be presented to the public on Monday lies primarily on new uses, spokespeople for the Ministry of Finance said.  

The spatial plan is to lay down the principles for the use of the Estonian maritime area for the long-term, in order to contribute to achieving a good condition of the marine environment and its preservation, and advance the economy. 

That said, the focus lies on new uses, where development interests already exist or are forecast to exist, such as aquaculture and energy production. In these fields the detailed plan sets out terms of use, while determining also the development areas for wind energy, the spokespeople said.   

The plan is intended to assess the combined effects of already ongoing activities and activities still being planned, the impact entailed in them for the marine environment and the economy, as well as social and cultural impacts and impacts on people's health.

With the detailed plan comes a separate impact assessment report, which sets out mitigating measures for the prevention of substantial impact. The plan is drawn up and the impacts assessed also in a cross-border view.  

The process of the maritime area spatial plan is entering its home stretch this year, and the government is expected to endorse the plan in spring 2021. In the future, the plan will serve as the basis for making of decisions for ministries and government agencies. For businesses, investors, municipalities and coastal communities the plan will provide guidance for directing one's activities.

The plan, the impact assessment report and related map applications are available from website of the Ministry of Finance and the maritime area portal. Proposals to make changes to the plan will be accepted until March 18.

A discussion introducing the maritime area spatial plan will take place at the Ministry of Finance in Tallinn on Feb. 18, while post-display public discussions will be held at the Proto Invention Factory in Harju County, at Saka manor in the Viru region, on Puise Nina farm in Laane County, and in Arensburg Boutique Hotel & Spa in Saaremaa during April.