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SDG 14: Life below water

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Conserve the seas and the natural resources they provide and promote their sustainable use

Luke's goal is to keep Finland's fish stocks viable and profitable. Good environmental status water is important, as it is the basis for sustainable economic use of aquatic natural resources. Luke also strives to ensure that aquatic resources are used at a sustainable level and produce wellbeing. Waters are important not only for commercial use but also for human wellbeing, recreation and health.

Luke is a key data producer, monitoring the state and viability of fish stocks. We provide expert advice and policy support based on scientific knowledge. Luke seeks to influence knowledge-based policies to promote sustainable fisheries and to support the fishing and aquaculture industry through research-based solutions. We also aim to reconcile different interests.

In this chapter, we provide examples of our diverse work in conserving the diversity of fish stocks and restoring migratory fish stocks. Through these, we strive to create good conditions for sustainable growth and responsible actions based on aquatic resources.

14.4 Conservation and restoration of fish stocks

Effectively regulate fisheries by 2020 and end overfishing, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, and destructive fishing practices. Implement science-based management plans so that fish stocks can be restored in the shortest possible time at least to levels that can guarantee the maximum sustainable yield from the fish stock according to their biological characteristics.

Monitoring and parent fisheries support the regulation and conservation of fish stocks

Luke collects fisheries data to support the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) through scientific advice on commercially important fish stocks: herring, sprat, salmon, zander, perch, whitefish and vendace. We also collect data from diadromous species (salmon, sea trout and eel) and marine bycatch data of mammals and seabirds.

The monitoring data collected will be used, among other things, to estimate stock abundance. Annual catch quotas for commercial fishing in the Baltic Sea area are then determined based on stock assessments and scientific advice.

Luke's expert services also include fish gene reserve work, the aim of which is to conserve 52 fish stocks of 13 fish species native to Finland. Thanks to our work, endangered species can be revived in Finland once their migratory connections and habitat restorations are put in place and fishing regulations have been adapted to support revitalization measures.

haavi kalastaja


Dam demolition calculation tool

A modelling tool has been developed to assess the financial value of hydropower plants. The tool supports the goal of the Finnish government's programme to restore endangered migratory fish stocks. These goals are implemented by the NOUSU programme (2020–2022) coordinated by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

The tool supports negotiations with small hydropower players to phase out power plant production. It can be used to outline the plant’s financial position in the event of any tightening of environmental obligations and upcoming investments. This makes it possible to assess the compensation needed and it helps to find locations that would be as affordable as possible. This, combined with information on the ecological significance of the stream, will help to focus protection where the greatest possible benefits are gained cost-effectively.

Rakennettu joki, vesi virtaa voimakkaasti.