The Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment (ELY-Centre) issued a decision by which excluded an area the size of 3,7 hectares from clearcutting as a breeding and rest area for flying squirrels based on the appellant company’s forest utilization notification.
The company deemed the limitation to be too extensive and appealed against the decision to the Administrative Court of Hämeenlinna. The Court dismissed the company’s appeal.
In its decision, the Supreme Administrative Court reversed both the decision of ELY-Centre and the decision of the Administrative Court of Hämeenlinna and returned the matter to ELY-Centre for reconsideration. According to the Supreme Administrative Court, the reasoning set out in legislative documents regarding the small size of the breeding and rest areas and the non-compensation of the protection and the demand for equal treatment of landowners were grounds on which to deem in this case that the protective exclusion area was too large.
The decision indicates that the non-compensable protection applied to the breeding and rest areas of flying squirrels should not lead to significant losses for a landowner. In this case the protection would have resulted in a loss of up to 100 000 euros of the sales proceeds of wood.