GreenBelt - Natural Forests and mires in the "Green Belt" of Koillismaa and Kainuu
The project achieved to draw up restoration plans for all the 13 project sites in Koillismaa and Kainuu in eastern Finland, covering some 1.100 ha of boreal forests and mires. The plans were almost fully implemented during the project period as the project restored 578 ha of boreal forests. The project also used innovative methods to restore 390 ha of aapa mires and bog woodlands by filling and blocking ditches and by clearing excess trees. Additionally almost 4 km of former forest roads were afforested and 2 ha of former gravel pit were restored. Active media work included the production of high quality publicity and information material. Three photographic exhibitions were also organized. In addition, the project constructed a 6.7 km nature trail to Lentua which is already attracting over 1000 visitors/year. On an international level, the project organised an international seminar, â€œFire and Forestâ€ in Kajaani. This event featured presentations by forest fire specialists from Nordic countries and Russia and produced a seminar publication. Finally, the project team worked in close co-operation with Russian colleagues from Kalevala National Park. The project results were successful as the water level has increased and the water has found the former streams. This is an innovative restoration method of mires in Finland and it can be used also in other mire restoration projects.