Nature value assessment of Kera shows ways of promoting biodiversity

12.9.2022 14.31Updated: 13.9.2022 15.31
A butterfly flies in the flower plantings on Kera's new street.
The assessment on biodiversity values carried out in Kera studied which actions could secure and improve the area’s natural values as the former logistics and industrial area is turned into an urban centre of 14,000 residents. Photo: Rosa Väisänen

Nature is an essential part of residents’ life in Espoo. In a constantly growing city, conserving and promoting nature and biodiversity pose especially interesting challenges. The developing district of Kera seeks to respond to these challenges.

The assessment of biodiversity values carried out in Kera in spring 2022 studied which actions could secure and improve the area’s nature values as the former logistics and industrial area is turned into an urban centre of 14,000 residents.

Overall, the results of the assessment are promising: the local detailed plans that steer Kera’s design allow for diverse habitats, structures and measures that increase biodiversity. According to the study, for the area to remain equally valuable or become even richer in terms of biodiversity, measures that improve the quality of the various habitat types are also required.

“The local detailed plans for Kera include the green factor planning tool that encourages projects to implement blocks that support biodiversity,” says landscape architect Katariina Peltola, who was involved in the preparation of the local detailed plans for Kera.

“The nature value assessment, which was carried out now to support the development of the district and its blocks, also presents actions through which the quality of future habitats in Kera can be increased so that the local biodiversity will not be weakened from its current state,” says specialist Rosa Väisänen, who managed the assessment work. Such actions include choosing high-quality and domestic flora and planning natural types of substrates.

In addition to nature values, the assessment also studied Kera’s Climate Roadmap’s impact on nature, and presented the clearest ways, solutions and procedures that will directly or indirectly support both the carbon neutrality goals and the mitigation of biodiversity loss. Actions that support biodiversity are often tied to climate goals.

The natural value survey applied the Biodiversity Metric 3.0 developed in the UK. The metric measures the current status of and changes in biodiversity in a specific area and helps steer the area’s development to secure its biodiversity values. The metric is rather new in Finland and still under development. As such, the results yielded from various projects are not yet established or comparable. In the survey of Kera, the metric was developed to better suit the conditions and qualities of the Finnish nature.  Extensive use of the metric in Espoo will still require more development and adjustment to Finnish conditions.

More information

The survey of natural values in Kera was implemented as a part of the Implementation Pathway for Environments that Accelerate Sustainable Growth (KETO). Project is funded by European Union’s REACT-EU ERDF and is part of the European Union’s response to the covid-19 pandemic. The survey was carried out by Ramboll.
  • Sustainability