Sustainable Development in Coastal and Marine Areas

The problem

Human activities along the coastal regionsmarine areas of the Baltic Sea produce threats and problems to the Baltic Sea coastal ecosystem and threaten environmental as well as recreational values. The HELCOM recommendations on Coastal Strip Protections, 15/1, are not properly implemented within national regulations and practice in many Baltic countries.

The goal

Citizens in the Baltic Sea region, as well as politicians and officials should be concerned about the constantly ongoing threats to the Baltic Sea Coastal environmental values and search for possible solutions to safeguard the coastal environment and guarantee goals of biodiversity protection and recreational values. Adequate and detailed spatial planning and management plans are needed for all Baltic Coastal areas.

How is CCB working with this issue?

CCB undertakes advocacy and raising awareness activities at local and regional level.

What can countries do together?

For the protection of the coast: fully implement the HELCOM recommendations on protection of the coastal strip in all countries.

What can each country do?

You can follow the example of Save the Latvian Dunes 2017 campaign by the Latvian Green Movement

Save the Latvian Dunes project has commenced in 2016 with number of activities: public events, reprinting of the leaflet, posters and stickers, and dissemination of those awareness raising materials, etc. It was led by CCB’s member organization, Latvian Green Movement (LaGM), since 2007 and they have arranged Save Latvian Dunes campaigns every summer with different focuses. In 2017 the focus was on information and public awareness activities, as well as on the issue of accessibility to natural amenities. Altogether 3 Patrol Teams (PTs) were formed with 3 leaders – Andis Uzulnieks, Arturs Undrests and Janis Matulis, who made patrolling all along the Latvian Coast line in 500 km length. LaGM PTs have made 17 drives during the summer season and distributed 10 000 copies of Save Latvian Dunes brochures, 120 posters and 5 000 stickers. Brochures were left in campsites, local parking sites and private hotels/camps. Part of distributed brochures were used to warn tourists about the Latvia’s laws of dunes protection and consequences if the law was violated. Thus LaGM used the method of putting the leaflets under the wipers to those drivers whose cars were parked in dune zone or too near the protected dune area. 7 LaGM members were involved in the campaign who took active part in drives to the Dune zone areas during our activities. Statistically the brochures reached out to more than 8 000 tourists directly on the sites and left about 2 000 brochures in private cafes and camps.

What can you do?

  • Ask your municipality to improve the coastal tourism infrastructure
  • Help fill data gaps on barriers in rivers by using a mobile app
  • Join clean-up activities
  • Respect the environment and recycle
  • Join the campaign against Nord Stream II
See all CCB Publications about Sustainable development in coastal and marine areas in Publications.



September 5, 2019

CCB joined the Ocean Call for G7

We have joined and signed the Ocean Call, which carries the voice and the commitments of more than 50 organizations mobilized for the ocean alongside Surfrider Foundation Europe.

Following the G7 Summit, the Ocean Call will also be staged at the United Nations Climate Change Summit in New York in September, at the COP 25 in Chile in December and finally at the COP 15 on Biodiversity in China in 2020.

Read the full declaration here.

March 6, 2019

Real actions, not ´realistic´ wishes – a recipe for an updated Baltic Sea Action plan

On 6-7 March high-level representatives met at the 40th Meeting of the Helsinki Commission. On this occasion, CCB was grateful to share the concerns of civil society organizations and almost a million individual members of CCB´s network around the Baltic Sea. Our concerns were (and are) connected with continuous and increasing violations of the fundamental principles and provisions of the Helsinki Convention:

  • Precautionary principle and science-based management;
  • Transparency, trust and sharing information to minimize transboundary impacts;
  • Joint measures for reaching joint goals, instead of prioritising actions of “overriding national interest”.

Read the full CCB´s statement here.


August 13, 2018

50 NGOs call on the International Seabed Authority to reconsider the need for deep sea mining

As the International Seabed Authority (ISA) gathers in Jamaica (24th session, July 2018), environmental organisations are calling on governments to wake up to the irreversible harm that deep sea mining will inflict, not only to marine ecosystems but also to global efforts to transition to a sustainable economy.

In a joint statement to the ISA, 50 organisations, including CCB, Greenpeace and Seas At Risk, warn of significant loss of biodiversity if the world’s seabeds are opened up to mining.

Read the full statement here.

March 5, 2018

Joint NGO letter to ministers about HELCOM BSAP

A joint NGO letter from CCB, Oceana and WWF to the minsters of environment concerning the progress towards BSAP goals in 2021. This letter was sent as part of the Ministerial meeting in HELCOM, 6th of March 2018:  Joint Letter to ministers on BSAP WWF Oceana CCB


February 28, 2017

To reach the SDGs globally the Baltic-wide actions need to be implemented first!

logo_2rToday, high-level representatives of the HELCOM Contracting Parties will meet in Helsinki to discuss how the Baltic Sea Region can contribute to the global goals on the conservation and sustainable use of the oceans, seas and marine resources by 2030. Actions related to eutrophication, marine litter and climate change will be given special focus in the discussions.

On behalf of environmentally concerned citizens of the Baltic Sea catchment, Coalition Clean Baltic would like to share some input to this work and bring to the attention of regional decision-makers the urgent needs to be addressed in order to reach the Sustainable Development Goals, (SDGs) and, even more importantly, to save the Baltic Sea from further deterioration.

Read the full statement here.







March 11, 2016

Statement at the 37th Meeting of the Helsinki Commission, 10-11 March 2016

Once again, we would like to share with you the concerns of civil society organizations and over 800,000 individual members of CCB’s network around the Baltic Sea.

Read Statement here: CCB_statement_HELCOM37_2016

February 15, 2016

Update of information regarding anthropogenic threats to Kurgalskiy Nature Reserve, Leningrad Oblast, Russia

CCB expressed its concerns regarding potential threats of industrial and urban developments in the vicinity of Kurgalsky Peninsula and Nature Reserve, the site of international importance, both listed as HELCOM MPA (#166) and the Ramsar Convention wetland (#690) at HELCOM HOD 49-2015

Read statement here: 7-2 Update of information regarding anthropogenic threats to Kurgalskiy Nature Reservey_CCB


November 19, 2015

Pending issues from HELCOM STATE & CONSERVATION 3-2015

With reference to the Terms of Reference of the HELCOM STATE & CONSERVATION Group, Coalition Clean Baltic submitted the following two information documents to the third Meeting of the Group:

  • (7J-4) Proposal for actions to save European eel in the Baltic Sea
  •  (7J-5) Physical loss and damage to the sea floor marine sediment extraction in the Baltic Sea

Read statement here: 4-19 Pending issues from State and Conservation 3-2015_CCB

November 19, 2015

Call for HELCOM action regarding Baltic MPAs within Russian part of the Gulf of Finland

In early September 2015, Coalition Clean Baltic approached Russian federal, regional and municipal authorities, as well as HELCOM, with a call for urgent action regarding the situation around one of the HELCOM Baltic MPAs and Ramsar sites in the Russian part of the Gulf of Finland, namely Kurgalsky Natural Reserve.

Read statement here: 4-18 Call for HELCOM action regarding Baltic MPAs within Russian part of the Gulf of Finland

November 19, 2015

Funding the EU MSFD Programs of Measures

A crucial part of the coherent implementation of the BSAP and the EU MSFD is the commitment to fund the needed measures to reach the GES targets. CCB is becoming concerned that several CPs being also EU MS have argued at different occasions, including the IG PoM and EU MSCG, that funding is a major problem for implementing the MSFD PoMs.  For a number of reasons CCB considers these claims unjustified.

Read statement here: 4-17 Funding the EU MSFD Programs of Measures_CCB

September 18, 2015

Open letter addressing Russian authorities and HELCOM

Open letter addressing Russian authorities and HELCOM with regards to an alarming situation around Kurgalskiy Nature Reserve at the coastline of the Gulf of Finland.

The letter addresses the situation, which mainly concerns conflicts between nature protection goals, large infrastructure projects and urban planning of the coastal area in the vicinity of the Kurgalskiy State Nature Reserve. The situation requires urgent action to prevent damage to natural amenities of this Protected Area and save it as the only MPA within Russian part of the Baltic Sea that covers both land and sea area.

Read the letter here. Note: the letter is both in English and Russian.

Relevant links to international NGOs working on sustainable development in coastal and marine areas


Elita KalninaEnvironmental Protection Club/VAKLatvia+371 7 226 042
Maret MerisaarEstonian Water AssociationEstonia
Olga SenovaFriends of the BalticRussia+7 812 428 06 58
Piotr GruszkaPKEPoland+48 91 489 42 33
Ramunas PovilanskasLithuanian Green Movement/ Environmental club ZvejoneLithuania+370 46 380 650
Susanna KnotzBUND, Friends of the Earth GermanyGermany
Tapani VeistolaVuosaari Harbour / Finnish Association for Nature ConservationFinland+358 922 808 266