Concept development for an environmental impact assessment for offshore wind parks in the Baltic States

 The aim of the project is to support the Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian environmental authorities with the development of a concept for environmental impact assessment (EIA) for offshore wind farms, based on the German “Standards for the Environmental Impact Assessment” for offshore wind farms and consulting the first Estonian EIAs of offshore wind farms by German experts. Furthermore, the project aims at transferring German experience concerning legal aspects related to the establishment of offshore wind farms to the Baltic States to help them to develop their own relevant legal framework.

 The main project activities include:
- Kick-off meeting of the project (27-28.11.2007, Tallinn, Estonia) This was an internal project partners’ meeting to plan the further project activities.
 - Expert meeting on “Evaluating potential impacts of offshore wind farm development on marine protected areas” (11-12.03.2008, Tallinn, Estonia) The goal of the meeting was to discuss the design of environmental baseline investigations for offshore wind farm projects in Estonia (Neugrund and Hiiumaa) and provide advice by the German consultant Dr. Jan Kube (Institute for Applied Ecology).
 - International workshop on “Planning offshore windfarms in line with Natura 2000 requirements: legal frame, impacts, investigation standards and procedures” (29-30.05.2008 in Sigulda, Latvia) The goals of the workshop were to discuss the current situation, problems and needs concerning planning and impact assessment of offshore wind farms in the Baltic States; and to learn from experiences of other countries (Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Netherlands) with the aim to avoid negative impacts of this new economic activity on nature values in the Eastern Baltic Sea. The workshop brought together different Baltic stakeholders related to the topic: developers, consultants, ministries dealing with environment, economy & planning issues, subordinated institutions of ministries, scientists, environmental NGOs, as well as guest experts from „old EU countries“ – in total almost 70 participants.
- International workshop on “Methodology for assessing impacts of offshore wind farms on biodiversity and landscape“ (5-7.11.2008, Kabli, Estonia) The goals of the workshop were to discuss and agree on the best methodology for assessing impacts of offshore wind farms on biodiversity and landscape, and to provide input for the guidelines for EIA for offshore wind farms in the Baltic States. The key experts from the Baltic States dealing with marine investigations and impact assessments were invited to the workshop – in total there were 32 participants, including the consultant on biological issues – Dr. Jan Kube, and a landscape expert from UK – Mr. Simon Bell.
 - The 3rd seminar on “EIA for off shore wind farms vis-à-vis Natura 2000 and other land uses: Which kind of legal frame we need?“ (15-16.04.2009, Riga, Latvia) The goals of the workshop were to discuss legal issues related to planning and environmental impact assessment of offshore windfarms; offer relevant consultancy from the German attorney at law, Dr. Ursula Prall, and exchange experience between the Baltic States. The target group of the event included Baltic authorities responsible for environmental impact assessment, nature conservation, spatial planning, renewable energy and use of marine areas; wind energy associations, developers and EIA experts. In total there was 55 participants from Germany and the Baltic States. Based on presentations of Dr. Prall, an in-depth background paper on “Legal frame for the use of offshore wind energy in Germany” was prepared. 
- Guidelines for EIA for offshore windfarms in the Baltic States The Baltic Guidelines for EIA for offshore wind farms with help of the German consultant Dr. Jan Kube (Institute for Applied Ecology) and many Baltic experts. 



Project financed by

German Federal Environment Agency

Project partners

Lead partner:
Baltic Environmental Forum-Latvia

Baltic Environmental Forum-Estonia 
Baltic Environmental Forum-Lithuania
Hendrikson & Ko Ltd (Estonia)
Institute for Applied Ecology (Germany)

More information

Edgars Bojārs
Environmental expert
Tel. 00371 6735 7556