Spatial planning in archipelago waters by high spatial resolution remote sensing

Thematic cluster:
Vigorous sea
Archipelago and Islands Sub-programme
1. Safe and healthy environment
Direction of support:
Raising environmental awareness (Finding new ways)
Jan 2010 - Apr 2013 (3 years, 4 months)
Total funding:
877 393 €
ERDF funding:
713 980 €

Development idea

Better spatial planning is needed to reduce further deterioration of ecological conditions of the Baltic Sea. Special attention needs to be paid to the most vulnerable coastal and archipelago areas. A lack of scientifically-sound background information and/or the high cost of getting the information were limiting the effectiveness of spatial planning in coastal waters.

Aim of the project

HISPARES combined knowledge of high spatial resolution remote sensing, marine benthic biology/ecology, GIS (Geographic Information System) and spatial modelling into a map-based tool that allows for spatial planning decisions to be made in shallow coastal water areas on the basis of scientifically-sound data.

Main project activities

The partners tested their methods and trialled the map-based tool in the most sensitive archipelago areas in Estonia and Sweden covering Natura2000 areas, fish spawning sites and locations with ongoing or planned human activities. The results from the test sites were made publicly available through a GIS-server to demonstrate the usefulness of the map-based tool in national environmental monitoring programmes, assessing environmental impact of human activities and increasing navigation safety in shallow archipelago areas.


University of Tartu

ERDF funding:
475 445 €
Amount of eligible national funding:
83 902 €

FOI, Swedish Defence Research Agency

ERDF funding:
238 535 €
Amount of eligible national funding:
79 512 €


GIS tools on the field mapping activities and spatial modelling of archipelago areas

The Web Map Services allow making spatial planning decisions in shallow coastal water areas, based on scientifically sound data.

One of the Web Map Services is developed for users with a broad knowledge in marine biology and ecology within the fields of environmental monitoring, protection and management. The second GIS tool is directed towards users that work with spatial planning and do not have a broad knowledge in marine biology and ecology.