Water Resource Management and the Law
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Water Resource Management and the Law

Edited by Erkki J. Hollo

Scarcity of water, floods and erosion caused by climate change have made the management of water resources a challenge to national and international actors worldwide. States have also initiated water projects to improve social welfare, often with significant impacts on the environment. This book combines close analysis of the legal structures of water rights with consideration of the modes of water management projects to illustrate current water-related problems in terms of practical solutions in a global context.
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Chapter 3: Private and public ownership of water areas – structures and implications of the Finnish model

Pekka Vihervuori


For historical reasons, national property law systems for water areas vary considerably, both in comparison to each other and regarding their relation to land cadastral systems. Also, the natural characteristics and significance of various forms of ownership on the one hand and other rights on the other hand have their impact on property law and, consequently, on water management and water-related permit systems. The overall picture of Finnish law shows a special combination of the different starting-points and their interaction. Public law and private law are strongly intertwined, although the first-mentioned dominates. Special attention is paid to the EU Water Framework Directive and its implementation in planning and, particularly, in relevant permit contexts. Keywords: Chapter 3 (Vihervuori): Ownership of water areas, public domain, property law, Finnish water law, state ownership, water management permit

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