Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation Wins Competition for Best Biodiversity Action

The national Countdown2010 Competition rewards those organizations with the best biodiversity action and that seek to find solutions that improve natural diversity and human health. The competition was organized by the IUCN National Committee of Finland.

The winner of the Countdown 2010 Competition for the Best Biodiversity Action in Finland in 2009 and 2010 is the Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation. The Foundation, established in 1995, acquires old-growth forests and guarantees that they are protected permanently in accordance with the Nature Conservation Act, and now total some 400 hectares.

The winner of the best biodiversity action competirion is the Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation.  From the left: Executive Manager Anneli Jussila, Artist Maiju Tirri, Minister of the Environment Paula Lehtomäki and Vice-Chair of the Foundation Otso... Photo: Liisa Nikula.

Environment Minister Paula Lehtomäki thanked the Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation for their activities. “The Foundation protects old-growth forests in good cooperation with landowners. It is significant that we get, through these voluntary inputs, nature sites that also future generations can enjoy.

In 2010, the Finnish Natural Heritage Foundation purchased six forest areas, were donated one forest area and another purchase has been closed. The activities are voluntary-based and this year has been the best in the history of the Foundation.

The areas protected by the Foundation are forests with plenty of decaying trees, herb-rich forests, mires, rocky slopes, traditional biotopes and other valuable nature sites. All these sites have been uncut for centuries or are returning to their natural state.

Together with its supporting society, the Foundation has promoted forest education, organized cultural events and excursions to protected areas as well as voluntary camps of clearing, management and ditch blocking work.

The jury, the IUCN National Committee of Finland thanked the Foundation for the well-designed, fresh and interactive website. Through the website one can make donations and become a sponsor and the website is published in several languages.

The Countdown2010 Competition winner received a work by artist Maiju Tirri and a Countdown Certificate of Honour for 2010 designed by graphic artist Jari Kostet.

Two other candidates were singled out for special praise by the Jury. Journalist Ismo Tuormaa’s for his articles on the Green Zone of the Helsinki Metropolitan Area and the web service NatureGate which makes recognizing plants and other species easier.

For More information:

Ms. Marina von Weissenberg, IUCN Regional Councillor, +358 50 307 0806              +358 50 307 0806      , [marina.vonweissenberg]

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