Demonstration Site in Finland: HAILUOTO – an island and a municipality
Hailuoto is the largest island in Bothnian Bay. The current size of the island is about 200 square kilometres, and it has, in the course of time, joined three separate islands. Hailuoto has started to rise from the sea approximately 2,000 years ago and it continues to do so about 1 cm annually (post-glacial rebound). Due to its particular landscape Hailuoto has been nominated as one of the 27th Finnish landscapes. It means that the island illustrates Finnish most representative natural and cultural characteristics. Symbolic value is strong.
Hailuoto has been inhabited for at least 1,000 years. Fishing and agriculture were essential for islanders back then. Today about 1000 inhabitants lives on the island and distance to Oulu, to the nearest big city, is about 50 kilometres. The ferry to the mainland goes several times per day. The length of the ferry route is 6.8 kilometres, and it takes 25 minutes one-way. During wintertime, an ice road is available for locomotion.
About one half of the working-age population in Hailuoto is commuters, who work in the mainland, yet fibre-optic cable makes telecommuting work also possible. The municipality is an important employer.
Sustainable development in Hailuoto
The natural and cultural environment in Hailuoto is unique. The rising shoreline is constantly changing and thus forms a living conservation area. The nature is of great value to the islanders, and it is protected with various conservation programmes, in which birds, shore areas and sandy ridges are of specific interest.
There are about 650 holiday houses (second residence) in Hailuoto. Built environment is characterized by well-preserved traditional buildings. In summer life on the island is particularly active and lively, and population doubles. Read our Sustainability Action plan here
Hailuoto: Past Present Future
Hailuoto: The Island of Sustainable Travelling
Northern Ostrobothnia's Climate Coffee Break