Both national and international measures seek to protect the Baltic Sea. Finland's own measures mainly affect the condition of coastal waters, Open sea areas are protected through international co-operation.
Programme for the Protection of the Baltic Sea
In 2002, the Finnish government made a decision-in-principle on protective measures for the Baltic Sea, compiled as Finland's Programme for the Protection of the Baltic Sea.
The programme objectives are
reducing the eutrophication of the Baltic Sea
improving the ecological state of the nature and water areas of the Baltic Sea
reducing the risks and damage related to the transportation of oil, chemicals, and hazardous substances
preserving the biodiversity of sea and coastal nature.
Baltic Sea Action Plan
The Programme for the Protection of the Baltic Sea requires action in both Finland and the surrounding areas. In June 2005, the Ministry of the Environment approved the Action Plan for the Protection of the Baltic Sea and Inland Watercourses, as a means of implementing the programme in Finland.
Programme to promote the recycling of nutrients and improve the status of the Archipelago Sea
The Ministry of the Environment has launched this programme, in order to promote the recycling of nutrients and improve the status of the Archipelago Sea (2012–2015), with the goal of turning Finland into a model country in terms of nutrient recycling.
Implementation of HELCOM’s Baltic Sea Action Plan (BSAP) in Finland
Finland is participating in the Baltic Sea Action Plan of the Baltic Marine Environment Commission (HELCOM). According to the latest overview, the BSAP has yielded good results in several sectors, such as environmental protection in maritime transport, the conservation of biodiversity and the reduction of point-source pollution. The reduction of the phosphorus load has proven difficult. This will require enhanced measures targeted at problematic areas. Reducing the phosphorus load of agriculture and other diffuse-source pollution will need longer-term efforts.
Finnish Inventory Programme for the Underwater Marine Environment
The Finnish Inventory Programme for the Underwater Marine Environment (VELMU) collects data on subaquatic habitats, species and their communities in Finnish sea area. The primary goal of the programme is to promote the protection of species and areas of the Baltic Sea, and the sustainable use of natural resources.