North Karelia Biosphere Reserve


April  2014

North Karelia Biosphere Reserve_Pohjois-Karjalan biosfäärialue

KARLANDS Project: Enhancing forest fire fighting across Finnish-Russian borders

  "Public Geographical Information System Application launched"

METSÄPALORISKIKARTTA.JPGIn Joensuu through the KARLANDS project has been launched the first GIS-data application that consists of both Finnish and Russian border area databases merged together as one.
"Russian planning maps have initially been only paper based, hence the maps usage limited to few persons. Now, the information is digitized for the first time for the KARLANDS project model regions of Kostomuksha and Muezersky, and is accessible to specialists electronically.” comments Dr. Eugene Lopatin; the project coordinator from University of Eastern Finland.

Published technology and databases offer for the very first time opportunities for cross-border planning and governance with the help of the database. One of the system applications is the “cross-border forest fire monitoring and prevention. According to Dr. Lopatin’s view, the application also opens up completely new possibilities for the sustainable exploitation of the Finnish-Russian border areas.


The database has been realized by the University of Eastern Finland under the project KARLANDS (www.karlands.fi). The project is also implementing the Green Belt of Fennoscandia's Memorandum of Understanding between Finland, Russia and Norway. Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment for North Karelia/North Karelia Biosphere Reserve is a partner in the project.


More Publications on the subject:


-University of Eastern Finland

-Radio rex




Ilosaarirock festival donates towards Landlocked Salmon protection and development


ilosaarirock logo.JPGJoensuu based Rock festival”Ilosaarirock”; A Biosphere Reserve partner is supporting the endangered Landlocked salmon’s habitats development in “Ala-Koitajoki” river located within the North Karelian Biosphere Reserve. The festival has donated 2075 euros towards the species protection and development. Ilosaarirock has reduced its carbon footprint since 2010 with its key aim being to protect the environment by minimizing the negative effect the festival has on it. It has since compensated its carbon footprint by donating towards environmental development activities such as protection of the endangered Great Crested Newt (2011) and cleaning of Lake Kuorinka (2012) among others. The projects shortlisted for the compensation are sought in the Northern Karelia area together with UNESCO's North Karelia Biosphere Reserve.


The Landlocked salmon is critically endangered specie whose native life cycle has been compromised due to human activities. The fish is close t2-vuotias järvilohi.jpgo extinction and its reproduction in the wild extremely rare. Its natural spawning areas located along the “Pielisjoki” river which runs through Joensuu city of North Karelia province are seen as potential grounds to help rejuvenate the fish species. Therefore, the donation by Ilosaarirock festival will be used in developing those potential spawning habitats along river Ala Koitajoki. On the right a photo of "local 2 year-old smolt"s taken by  the project 's manager Mirko Laakonen


Ilosaarirock is also presented in UNESCO's worldwide circulation poster (below) as an example of an eco-efficient festival also compensating its carbon emissions. More information on the festival's environmental actions: click here




Eco-efficient Tourism meeting with Entrepreneurs a Success

"More infoboards to be installed during this spring"


The seminar was arranged by City of Ilomantsi, Finnish Environment Institute -SYKE, and Centre for Economic development, Transport and the Environment for North Karelia under the umbrella of EET project


Eco -efficient Tourism (ENPI KA358) is funded by the EU, Republic of Finland and the Russian federation.


Eco-eficent tourism panel meeting with local entreprenuers took place at "Hyvinvointikeskus Toivonlahti centre" in Ilomantsi 20.2.2014. Over 20 participants attended.


The half day meeting focused on infoboard development and realization process and also eco-efficiency examples from North Karelia and other parts of Finland on how entreprenuers/tourism service providers can incorporate eco-efficiency in their daily activities and how networking can help the tourism companies maximize profits whence reducing environmental impacts in their daily activities.

Also, a presentation was given on intended infoboard process and the entreprenuers were given the chance to comment on the issue. All materials from the event can be retrieved by clicking "here"



The event was solely in Finnish language as it was meant for local tourism entreprenuers mainly from Ilomantsi area of North Karelia. The meeting was a success and produced great comments and ideas for development & cooperation b

eyond the meeting. "Companies and eco-efficiency contest" was also launched in same day and ended on 31.3.2013. More info about the project: here

The photo: One of the already installed infoboards in Parppeinvaara, Ilomantsi. Photo by Daisy L Silvennoinen


"Goodbye to Fossil fuel" says North Karelia Province of Finland

"Province strives to be Fossil fuel free by 2030"


wood by Eevi Kohio.jpg

North Karelian Climate change and energy programme focuses on full elimination of fossil fuel use in exchange of renewable energy only come year 2030. Commitment to sustainable development actions was published few weeks ago in Helsinki and North Karelian Climate change and energy programme's focus "Fossil oil free region" was presented as an example. So far, North Karelia has already exceeded the EU targets on emission reduction and between 2007 and 2012, greenhouse gas emissions have been reduced by 27%. Fortum biooil plant that started operations about the end of 2013,and Stora Enso energy investments are a drive towards renewable energy usage in the province. More info: click here





1)Expertise in sustainable silence travel: Seminar

"Challanges and opportunities of silence tourism"

Seminar language: Finnish

Venue: Carelicum auditorium, Koskikatu 5, Joensuu
Registration by Tuesday 22.4. to tuomo.alhojarvi@uef.fi



 2) SciFest - Science and technology festival for pupils, students and teachers

scifest joensuu 2014.JPG

24-26.4.2014 in Joensuu, Finland

SciFest is a yearly international festival which brings together thousands of schoolkids, high school students, and teachers from around the world to discover new experiences and learn about science, technology and the environment. SciFest is all about bringing science to young people in fun and engaging ways. This is why the chief element of the festival is workshops, where kids can experiment and try things out for themselves. The Biosphere Reserve is a supporter of the event!

More info: click here




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