Land extraction reporting and permits

Reporting in accordance with the Land Extraction Act

Section 23a of the Land Extraction Act requires the holder of the land extraction permit to notify the permit authority of the quantity and type of material extracted annually. The extractor must also report the location and an estimate of the amount of resources extracted for ordinary household needs, if the amount exceeds or is likely to exceed 500 solid cubic metres. The permit authority reports the extraction data to the centre for economic development, transport and the environment.

Reporting forms

Permit pursuant to the Land Extraction Act

Extracting land for other than ordinary household needs requires a permit, as stipulated in the Land Extraction Act.  Permit applications are made to the municipality in question. Municipalities make permit decisions and supervise land extraction within their borders. The environmental provisions in Section 3 of the Land Extraction Act must be taken into account when granting the permits.Other permits may be needed for extracting land

Environmental permit

According to the Environmental Protection Decree (169/2000), an environmental permit is required for the extraction of resources in the following cases:

  •  stone quarries or stone quarrying for purposes other than civil engineering work and in which the aggregate is worked at least 50 days per year;
  •  fixed crushing plants, or portable crushing plants situated at a specific location and in use at least 50 days per year.

Activities pursued on a smaller scale shall require an environmental permit if located in an important groundwater basin or another groundwater basin suitable for water supply use and the activity concerned could pose a risk of groundwater contamination.

Environmental permits for the aforementioned works are granted by municipalities.

Water permit

In accordance with the Water Act, a water permit issued by the Regional State Administrative Agency is required if the extraction of land resources may change the quality or quantity of groundwater, if the change may cause the status of groundwater to deteriorate or reduce the yield or usability of an important groundwater basin or another groundwater basin suitable for water supply use, or if the change makes water difficult to extract or unsuitable for use. This is relevant if the protected land extraction happens below ground water surface, on a groundwater supply buffer zone or widely in a groundwater basin.

Permit for landscape work
Land can be extracted from an area covered by a local detailed plan, if a landscape permit pursuant to the Landscape and Building Act has been issued, and if the extraction of land is a necessary preparation step in a construction project subject to a building permit (Land Use and Building Act, Section 72).

Land must not be extracted from nature reserves

The protected habitat types defined in Chapter 4 of the Nature Conservation Act and the species under strict protection defined in Section 47 of the Act and in Appendix 4, Section 22 of the Decree are referred to as natural sites of distinctive features in the Land Extraction Act, and they must be taken into account in land extraction planning.Act and Decree on Environmental Impact Assessment Procedure

The Act on Environmental Impact Assessment Procedure is applied to land extraction works in some cases. An extraction project pursuant to the Land Extraction Act may be subject to the EIA procedure either directly, based on the list of projects in the EIA Decree (Section 6) or otherwise, based on the case-by-case application decision of the EIA procedure (Section 4, paragraph 2).

According to the list, the extraction of stone, gravel or sand is subject to the EIA procedure if the area of extraction or excavation is larger than 25 hectares or the amount of the extracted land resource is at least 200,000 solid cubic metres per annum. Case-by-case decisions on the application of the assessment procedure are made by regional centres for economic development, transport and the environment.

More information

Governmental Secretary Tuuli Loven, The Ministry of the Environment, firstname.lastname@ymparisto.fi

Published 2013-12-15 at 15:45, updated 2013-12-15 at 15:43