Marine Protected Areas in the Eastern Baltic Sea (Baltic MPAs)

The Baltic Sea is a unique and fragile ecosystem hosting many species and habitats of European interest and of importance for global biodiversity. Especially since EU enlargement on 1 May 2004 the Member States of the European Union share a great common responsibility for the protection of the Baltic Sea and the sustainable use of its resources.

This project contributed to the overall objective of protection and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in the Eastern Baltic Sea (costal and offshore waters of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). In this context implementing the EU’s Natura 2000 network in marine areas is a key instrument.

Main objectives:
- to get better information about species and habitats of European importance in the coastal waters of the Baltic States;
- to assess if major threats endanger them;
- to propose new areas with special nature values to be designated by the national authorities for protection under the European Natura 2000 frame;
- to elaborate protection and management proposals for these sites.

Furthermore the project wanted to increase the awareness among concerned stakeholders and the general public in Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania on Natura 2000 issues, marine protected areas and biodiversity in general. It also wanted to facilitate cooperation with Russian colleagues and experts from the Northern and Western Baltic Sea region. The project has been attested having achieved a lot of valuable outcome for the Baltic States and the direct beneficiaries of the results, the three ministries of Environment, have expressed their satisfaction with the work.

We invite you to visit the instructional portal  where the information about the nature values in the Baltic Sea is summarized, publications prepared in the frame of project are available and it is possible to see the a set of video clips “See the sea”



Project financed by

European Commission LIFE programme

Project partners

Lead partner
Baltic Environmental Forum-Latvia

Baltic Environmental Forum – Estonia
Estonian Environmental Information Centre
Estonian Marine Institute, University of Tartu
Estonian Ornithology Society
Estonian Environmental Board
Marine and Inland Waters Administration
The National Armed Forces of Republic of Latvia
Ministry of Defence, Latvia
Institute of Aquatic Ecology
Latvian Ornithological Society
Latvian Fish Resources Agency
Wildlife and Environmental Film Productions
“Socially Oriented Project Agency”
Baltic Environmental Forum – Lithuania
Institute of Ecology, Vilnius University
Coastal Research and Planning Institute, Klaipėda University
Centre of Marine Research
 Regional Public Organization “St.Petersburg Naturalists Society”
Birdlife International
“Metsähallitus” National Heritage Services

More information

Heidrun Fammler
Project manager 
Tel. 00371 6735 7552