The case of conflicting Finnish peatland management – Skewed representation of nature, participation and policy instruments

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Salomaa , A , Paloniemi , R & Ekroos , A 2018 , ' The case of conflicting Finnish peatland management – Skewed representation of nature, participation and policy instruments ' , Journal of Environmental Management , vol. 223 , no. 1 , pp. 694-702 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2018.06.048

Title: The case of conflicting Finnish peatland management – Skewed representation of nature, participation and policy instruments
Author: Salomaa, Anna; Paloniemi, Riikka; Ekroos, Ari
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Urban Environmental Policy
Date: 2018-10-01
Language: eng
Number of pages: 9
Belongs to series: Journal of Environmental Management
ISSN: 0301-4797
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/238897
Abstract: Peatlands that are close to a natural state are rich in biodiversity and are significant carbon storages. Simultaneously, peat resources are of interest to industry, which leads to competing interests and tensions regarding the use and management of peatlands. In this case study, we studied knowledge-management interactions through the development of participation and the resulting representation of nature (how nature was described), as well as the proposed and implemented conservation policy instruments. We focused on the years 2009-2015, when peatland management was intensively debated in Finland. We did an interpretative policy analysis using policy documents (Peatland Strategy; Government Resolution; Proposal for Conservation Programme) and environmental legislation as central data. Our results show how the representation of nature reflected the purpose of the documents and consensus of participants' values. The representation of nature changed from skewed use of ecosystem services to detailed ecological knowledge. However, simultaneously, political power changed and the planned supplementation programme for peatland conservation was not implemented. The Environment Protection Act was reformulated so that it prohibited the use of the most valuable peatlands. Landowners did not have the chance to fully participate in the policy process. Overall, the conservation policy instruments changed to emphasize voluntariness but without an adequate budget to ensure sufficient conservation.
Subject: 1172 Environmental sciences
Land use
Natural resources
Participation
Peat
Policy
Sustainable use
ECOSYSTEM SERVICES
CONSERVATION
PROTECTION
KNOWLEDGE
ECOLOGY
SCIENCE
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