Permitting process in Finland

Permitting process in Finland

The steps described on this page present the steps involved in the permitting process of a wind power project in Finland. Depending on the project, separate issues can proceed in different order or in different phase of a project. All of the projects do not necessarily need all of the permits, e.g. usually the water permit is not needed for an onshore wind farm. Below, the different phases of the project are described in more detail.


Master planning and (environmental impact assessment, EIA)

  • Statement on need of EIA from ELY center (ELY center = Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment)
    • If the project size is above 45 MW or 10 WTGs, EIA is always required
    • In other cases, ELY makes the decision whether EIAis needed or not
  • STR – Suunnittelutarveratkaisu (Need for planning decision)
    • In small projects instead of Master Plan (very rare)
    • Applied from the municipality

Master planning and (environmental impact assessment)

  • YVA – Ympäristövaikutustenarviointi (EIA – Environmental Impact Assessment)
    • Required by local ELY-center, usually made by a consultant
    • Needed for projects larger than 10 turbines or total capacity over 45 MW
    • Is some cases ELY-center may require EIA also for smaller projects (sensitive environment or estimated that the environmental impacts are similar than in a wind farm with then 10 turbines)
  • Master Plan
    • Municipal council decides whether to start it and whether to accept the result
    • Municipality accepts the maker (usually a consultant)
    • Master plan contract usually made with the municipality
    • The municipality may charge the costs from the project developer

 Building permit

  • Building permit for met mast
    • Applied from the municipality’s building inspection
  • Building permit for WTG and substation
    • Applied from the municipality’s building inspection
    • Can be granted after the municipality has accepted the master plan even though the plan is not yet legally valid. The construction cannot be started before both the master plan and the building permit are legally valid.
    • Needed attachments: updated noise and flickering modeling results, modelling of the impacts on the scenery, If EIA done the ELY-centre statement on the EIA, etc.
  • Environmental permit
    • Applied from the municipality’s environmental inspector
    • Needed if the wind farm may cause unreasonable noise, flickering etc.
    • Previously made nature-, noise- etc. assessments (during MP and possibly EIA) needed as attachments
  • Water permit
    • Applied from Regional State Administrative Agencies (AVI)
    • Required if project has impacts on water systems (very rare onshore, always needed offshore)

 Permitting of the Grid Connection

  • Fingrid or local grid operator
  • Power line research permit (Maanmittauslaitos)
  • Project permit according to the electricity market act (Energiavirasto, Työ- ja elinekeinoministeriö 588/2013)
  • Pre-takeover contracts for the power line area
  • Power line expropriation permit (Maanmittauslaitos / TEM)


  • Transport permit
    • Needed for special transports on public roads. This is usually handled by the transport company
    • In case of doubt, they will make a pre-decision
  • Junction permit
    • Applied from Pirkanmaan ELY-center for each new junction/change of usage type on public roads
  • Cable permit
    • Applied from local or Pirkanmaan ELY-center for installing underground cables along public roads
  • Flight obstacle permit
    • Applied from Traficom
  • Soil excavation
    • Only needed if the project developer has own borrow pits.
    • Applied from the municipality
  • Destruction permit for archaeological sites (muinaismuistolain kajoamislupa)
    • Required for removing ancient grave sites etc.
    • Very rare