National Environmental Law


National environmental law is one of the CCEEL's core areas, covering various themes of traditional and modern environmental law.


Work on national environmental law is currently lead by three professors:

Dr Tapio Määttä, Professor of Environmental Law

Dr Ismo Pölönen, Professor of Environmental Law (Bioeconomy and Natural Resources Law)

Dr Antti Belinskij, Professor of Environmental Law (Water Law)


CCEEL research in environmental law tends to be multidisciplinary and aims towards high societal impact and policy relevance. Much of the research is directly applicable in interpreting and developing national environmental legislation and guidance, and a number of reports have been prepared for the Finnish Government to assist in these tasks.

CCEEL and the UEF Law School offer the widest selection of environmental law courses in Finland, covering all areas of environmental law ranging from nature conservation to zoning- and construction law.

Current research interests by the national environmental law group include:

  • environmental protection law, particularly environmental impact assessment
  • nature conservation law
  • mining law
  • water law
  • forest law
  • zoning law
  • real estate law
  • theory of argumentation in environmental law


Research Groups and Members:

Natural Resources, Bioeconomy and Mining Law

Dr Ismo Pölönen, Professor of Environmental Law

Dr Lea Halonen

Dr Seita Romppanen, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law


Tero Laakso, PhD Researcher

Kimmo Huttunen, PhD Researcher

Juha Perho, PhD Researcher

Saara Österberg, PhD Researcher

Jussi Airaksinen, PhD Researcher

Hilkka Heinonen, PhD Researcher

Klaus Metsä-Simola, PhD Researcher


Water Law

Dr Antti Belinskij, Professor of Environmental Law

Dr Niko Soininen, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Law


Arto Hietaniemi, PhD Researcher

Amanda Nikkilä, PhD Researcher

Laura Leino, PhD Researcher

Suvi-Tuuli Puharinen, PhD Researcher


Current Research Projects:

  • From Failand to Winland (2016–2019)
  • Derogations from the Environmental Objectives of the Water Framework Directive (2017–2018)


Past Research Projects:

  • Regulatory Regime of Integrated Forest Governance – Reconsidering the Role of Hard Law (2011–2013)
  • Neighbor Disputes and Housing in Finland (2011–2015)
  • Legal Framework to Promote Water Security (2013-2015)
  • Water Management and Peat Production: From Relevant Facts to Effective Norms (2012–2016)
  • Impacts of Terrestrial Organic Matter Loading on Lake Food Webs and Human Health - Challenges for Environmental Regulation (2012–2016)
  • Environmental Justice and Ecosystem Services: Access, Equity and Participation in the Use and Management of Aquatic Environments in the Helsinki Region (2012–2016)
  • Revitalizing Migratory Fish Stocks – Environmental flow and other solutions (2016–2017)