How We Operate
As the steward of state-owned land and water areas, Metsähallitus works on the principle of co-operation, openness and interaction with all parties interested in the use of state-owned areas.
These also apply to our work in wind power development. The interactive approach helps minimize conflicts and achieve solutions that are well founded and widely accepted and thus lay the foundations for sustainable business operations.
General operating principles
Metsähallitus is an economically stable state-owned enterprise and we have a vast experience in responsible project development of land-based wind power. The Government Programme details Finland’s ambitious goal to be a fossil free/carbon-neutral welfare society by 2035. We are implementing this goal through our strategy and climate programme. Our aim is to multiply the production of renewable energy in state-owned land and water areas by 2030.
The state’s land and water areas Metsähallitus cares for are managed as a whole. Metsähallitus has an extensive right of action as the steward of these areas. Metsähallitus’ line of business is the commercial exploitation of state-owned land and water property entrusted to its stewardship and the governance of its subsidiaries and associated companies, which conduct business related to managing this property. Metsähallitus Property Development is responsible for wind power development operations on state land and water areas.
In addition to lucrative business operations, society’s overall interests are served by ensuring that the societal needs associated with the areas managed by Metsähallitus are addressed appropriately. The requirements related to recreational use of nature and promoting employment must also be taken into consideration. As a key element in the sustainable management and use of natural resources, Metsähallitus must pay adequate attention to protecting biodiversity and increasing it by suitable means.
It is vital to coordinate the land use needs related to wind power with other forms of land use, and the overall responsibility for achieving this objective rests with Metsähallitus as the manager of state-owned areas. We believe that wind power construction should take place without causing unnecessary damage to nature and the environment.
Metsähallitus’ operating model for offshore wind power
Metsähallitus operates at sea both as a project developer for wind power and as an issuer and lessor of reservation and access rights contracts. We do not build wind turbines or have them built, we do not own the wind parks or participate in energy production. In all cases, ownership of the water area remains with the state.
Korsnäs is the first offshore wind power project in which we act as the project developer. With such a large-scale project we are implementing a partner-based operating model. We are in the process of looking for a partner that can implement project construction and operations of this magnitude and we will organise a tender competition to find this partner. The partner may be from Finland or foreign, but they must meet the terms of Metsähallitus’ responsible business operations. Co-operation contract, that will be drawn between the partners, will define the shares of ownership and responsibilities in operations between the partners.
Reconciling different objectives is in our core competence. We have an enormous stakeholder network and expertise to engage and listen to this network. The development of the offshore wind farm requires a participatory approach and good communication with both decision-makers and local people, and we have expertise in this.
After the development of the project, Metsähallitus will act as a lessor in wind farms, and the rental payments received from wind farms will form a part of Metsähallitus’ profits.
Metsähallitus` role in wind power project development on land areas
Our wide in-house knowledge of local nature and environmental values, species conservation programs as well as other local activities helps us to identify the critical stakeholders in the early phase of project development.
- Metsähallitus works on the principle of co-operation, openness and interaction with all parties interested in the use of state-owned land
- Wide and deep in-house knowledge of environmental and nature values as well as local activities helps us to identify the critical stakeholders early on
- Close co-operation and early inclusion of local stakeholders is in the core of our wind power project development business
- Metsähallitus and its suppliers are engaged to our code of conduct principles
Leasing of areas to other wind power operators
We also lease the state areas under reservation and right of use agreements to wind power projects of other project developers. We now have dozens of such agreements.
In principle, the area can be leased to wind power projects of external actors if only a small part of the planned wind power area is controlled by Metsähallitus and it would not be profitable to take the part located in the area managed by Metsähallitus as a separate project.
A valid reservation or right of use agreements with Metsähallitus is required before any areas managed by Metsähallitus can be zoned for wind power construction.
Before granting a reservation or right of use agreements, Metsähallitus assesses the suitability of the leased area for wind power production in relation to, among other things, environmental values and other land use.