«Eco-efficient tourism» project

2 february 2012

The ENPI Karelia Programme «Eco-efficient tourism» project has been approved for implementation.


Partner consortia lead by the “North-Centre” includes from the Russian side:

  • Karelian Research Centre,
  • Karelian Energy Efficiency Center,
  • Petrozavodsk Municipal Utility College,
  • Pryazha National and Sortavala Municipal District Administrations.

Finnish partners are represented by:

  • Ecofoster Group,
  • Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE),
  • Centre for Economic Development,
  • Transport and the Environment for North Karelia,
  • Metsähallitus Natural Heritage Services for South Finland/North Karelia,
  • Ilomantsi Municipality,
  • Karelia Expert company (associate partner)
Project intends to improve eco-efficiency and visibility of tourism services in Russia (Republic of Karelia, Lake Ladoga and Syamozero areas) and Finland (North Karelia province, Ruunaa and Ilomantsi areas). These areas will be project pilot areas with demonstration components included. The project targets at the mega-trends of environmental responsibility and nature tourism which increases about 30 % per year.
Recreational area management practices, introduction of eco-efficient technologies, wide publicity and relevant regional and local partners will be the keys to success. A comprehensive plan envisaging specific measures for energy and water supply, waste water management, and waste processing shall be worked out for each pilot area. Efficient organizational set-ups will be developed for interactions between local people, authorities, NGOs, businesses. The models can further be used in other recreation/nature tourism areas.
The project’s demo component envisages practical implementation of technological solutions for facilitation of the pilot areas. Demo sites are also important in spreading the solution to the surrounding societies. The transboundary project consortium is a strong one, containing the experience and practices from Finnish side and the relevant partners and planning authorities from Russian side. The consortium will work out joint solutions, based on experiences from both sides (needs & expertise) to secure a balance between the capacities of organizations of various levels and local communities in introduction of modern waste processing and energy-efficient technologies and environmental issues in the areas. Contextsensitivity in various areas will be emphasized.
Project will disseminate information about the regions and the developed solutions to both participating countries and also other countries. The exceptional combination of increasing the volume of tourism and recreation, but decreasing the environmental pressure will be effectively used for making the area known and more attractive to new visitors as an environmentally friendly and attractive area. The existing tourism structures such as “The Blue Highway”, starting from Petrozavodsk, going through the target areas and reaching to Mo I Rana in Norway, will also be used for development and publicity purposes.