Maritime Spatial Planning for Sustainable Blue Economies

P2 Sustainable use of common resources

2.2. Sustainably planned and managed marine and coastal areas

Southern Finland - Estonia

01.10.2016 - 31.12.2019

€1 997 882

€1 563 522

Project Summary:

The Plan4Blue project promotes sustainable planning and management of marine and coastal areas of the Gulf of Finland and the Archipelago Sea by developing a Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) capacity. This aim will be achieved by setting up a cross-border collaboration in the field for this area.

The project supports growth of the marine and maritime sectors in a way that emphasizes the need to find a balance between economic, social and environmental goals. Because many of the economic activities cross borders and have cross-border impacts, planning and management requires cross-border collaboration between stakeholders and authorities.
The project responds directly to the programme goals by developing capacity in cross-border MSP in order to ensure a sustainable use of common resources. The project facilitates the collaboration of stakeholders and authorities to find cross-border solutions for sustainable planning and management of marine and coastal areas. The project focuses on cross-border aspects, but addresses also national and county levels as appropriate. The result will help to improve management of Gulf of Finland and its coastal areas.

Lead Partner

Suomen ympäristökeskus

Country: FI

Partner budget: 520.807 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 390.605 EUR ERDF

Project Partners

Tartu Ülikool

Country: EE

Partner budget: 453.400 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 385.390 EUR ERDF

Turun yliopisto

Country: FI

Partner budget: 489.799 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 367.349 EUR ERDF

Uudenmaan liitto

Country: FI

Partner budget: 168.181 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 126.136 EUR ERDF

Varsinais-Suomen liitto

Country: FI

Partner budget: 167.995 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 125.996 EUR ERDF

MTÜ Balti Keskkonnafoorum

Country: EE

Partner budget: 197.700 EUR

Amount of ERDF funding: 168.045 EUR ERDF

Associated Partners


Country: EE

Harju Maavalitsus

Country: EE

Ida-Viru Maavalitsus

Country: EE

Lääne-Viru Maavalitsus

Country: EE

Achieved results

Project result in category -
Marine/coastal area with improved management

Plan4Blue - maritime spatial planning for future

The Plan4Blue project worked with Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP), under which it produced four future scenarios to support planning and management activities.

These scenarios discuss:

  1. Marine energy
  2. The maritime cluster
  3. Blue bioeconomy & subsea resources and
  4. Maritime tourism.

Planning was improved in the Finnish Gulf area between Finland and Estonia. Also, Russia and Åland islands were included on an information exchange level.

The project also created a guidance document to manage environmental risks related to human activities. For the guidance document, three case studies on the topics of shipping, pelagic fishing and nature conservation were conducted. Based on this, recommendations were given on how each of these topics should be addressed in MSP and what are important cross-border considerations. In addition, the project developed recommendations for cross-border collaboration in the frame of MSP.

Concrete improvements by the project include:

  • Increased cross-border coherence of MSP through joint planning and management activities
  • Increased awareness of the sustainable use of resources
  • Improved capacity of planners, managers and stakeholders to assess what impact the project cross-border marine activities have had on environmental and socio-economic topics.

During implementation, the project published several documents as tangible proof for the improved MSP:

  • The main results are the scenarios, for which also animations and infographics have been published.
  • There are publications and reports published on each of the project topics; sustainable blue economies, environmental management of Maritime Spatial Planning, cross-border spatial data analysis and map visualisations and cross-border collaboration in MSP.
  • Recommendations for maritime spatial planning for sustainable blue economies (pdf)

Publications related to the above topics are listed below

Sustainable Blue Economies:

Environmental Management:

Spatial Analysis:

Cross-border collaboration in MSP:

More available on the project website.