Ecological compensation

Through ecological compensation, adverse impacts on biodiversity caused by human action in a certain area are offset by improving biodiversity in another area.

Ecological compensation is a last resort means to be used when the harm cannot be prevented or mitigated. This means that it could only be used in cases where there is no other potential solution. Ecological compensation contributes to the achievement of the target to halt biodiversity loss by 2030.

Voluntary ecological compensation in Nature Conservation Act

The Nature Conservation Act that will enter into force in the beginning of June lays down provisions on the procedure for voluntary ecological compensation and the criteria for offsetting.

In ecological compensation the party causing the deterioration, i.e. an operator whose activities have adverse impacts on nature values, can offset the deterioration caused to a habitat type or habitat of a certain species. This can be done through the generation of nature values or through avoided loss offsets. The generation of nature values means the improvement of the natural state of a site representing a deteriorated habitat type by restoration, such as by restoring the water balance of a mire or protecting an area of high nature value.

Compensation register

The work on the compensation register is currently under way at the Ministry of the Environment. The register will be used for submitting applications and keeping a list of the available nature values to be generated and as an open register of the approved offsetting operations. 

Further information

Leila Suvantola, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Legislative Affairs 
Ministry of the Environment, Department of the Natural Environment, Biodiversity 0295250433