Finland: richest country in water in the world.

Finland is a country with hundreds of rivers, lakes, and a large coastline. It has also managed to keep them all in the best condition, with little pollution of its waters. The country not only seeks to ensure that water resources can be kept stable and safe of pollution, but also to teach countries that suffer water shortage how to streamline their processes.


The Republic of Finland is a country of 5,250,275 inhabitants, which is located in Northern Europe. It is surrounded by the Baltic Sea, the Gulf of Bothnia and the Gulf of Finland and by several countries. Its total area is 338.145 square kilometers, of which 34.330 are water.


The weather in Finland is cold, in some regions it even becomes subarctic. However, the North Atlantic Current moderates temperatures in the region. It has more than 60 000 lakes within its territory.


Some of the environmental problems that are found there are air pollution caused by industries, and water contamination caused by industrial wastes and chemicals used in agriculture. This leads to some endemic animal populations to be endangered due to the loss of their habitat.


The country has 110 cubic kilometers of fresh water reserves, out of which 2.33 are used annually for various purposes. The sector that most needs it is the Industry in the area: that is where 84% of the water that is used anually goes. Agriculture uses 3% and homes use 14%. Each person uses 444 meters of water a year.



The current situation

The country's goal is to raise not only its citizens awareness, but also other countrie's, so they understand the importance of water and the fact that it is a finite resource. Within its borders the country divide its goals in short and long term goals, depending on what they want to achieve.


The Finnish government is trying to get Finnish actors that are involved in the water sector to commit to a long-term cooperation among themselves and with other stakeholders. Doing this will not only ensure that the water in the country remains stable, it would also mean the country will be able to cooperate with international institutions to improve water quality in other countries.


They also seek to provide training not only on issues that affect the country directly, but also about developing countries. They are making inquiries amongst the citizens to find out how much they know about water issues and the importance of them in the country.


In the long run they want their citizens to be aware of the situation and the fact that the problems that arise in this sector also affect other sectors, such as economics, ecology, health and energy. If this could be implemented, the government could respond more effectively to local problems that may arise, and they would be able to seek new models for approaching the problem.



What's been done

The priorities in the water sector have tried to be identified: these areas can be can systematically attacked to promote the safety of the water. Among the issues identified we have:


  • Specific planning and monitoring of the drainage of the basins, and how it affects the land and the access to water.
  • Creation of water related institutions to improve local skills.
  • Predict the impact of floods, droughts and other extreme weather events, what the risks each of them involves, and when they will occur.
  • Protection and restoration of the quality of the rivers.


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