Beach protection

Beach protection allows the public to use beaches and waters for outdoor recreation. It also protects animals and plants that live near beaches and in the water. For certain specific reasons, a shoreline protection exemption can be granted.

Beach protection is regulated by law and applies equally throughout the country to all coasts, lakes and watercourses, regardless of size. Beach protection covers land and water areas up to 100 metres from the shoreline, i.e. not only on land but also in the water.

The purpose of beach protection is to ensure long-term:

  • to safeguard the conditions for public access to beaches.
  • Preserve good living conditions for wildlife on land and in water.

The County Administrative Board's exemption from the prohibition of beach protection

The County Administrative Board has decided on exemption from beach protection for supplementary measures. This means that such measures can be carried out without an exemption within 15 metres of a main building, but no closer than 25 metres to the shoreline.

The exemption for supplementary measures also applies where there is an agreed site demarcation. The prohibition also does not apply to buildings, installations, devices or measures if they are needed for agriculture, fishing, forestry or reindeer husbandry.

Dispensation from beach protection

An exemption, i.e. a derogation from the prohibition in the Shoreline Protection Act, is required for building, digging, constructing or otherwise carrying out measures that affect the shoreline protection area.

When can a shoreline protection exemption be granted?

According to Chapter 7, § 18 c of the Environmental Code, a beach protection exemption can only be granted if one of the following special reasons exists:

  • The area is already occupied in such a way that it is not relevant to the objectives of shoreline protection.
  • The area is well separated from the area closest to the shoreline by a road, railway, building activity or other development.
  • The area is needed for a facility which, in order to function, must be located on the waterfront and the need cannot be met outside the shoreline protection area.
  • The area is needed to expand an existing activity and the expansion cannot be made outside the area.
  • The area is needed to satisfy an important public interest which cannot be satisfied outside the area.
  • The area needs to be used to satisfy another very important interest.

Dispensation may also be granted if the establishment is considered to contribute to rural development in areas close to the shore (LIS).

For more information on LIS areas, see the municipality's Master Plan.

Application for exemption

In order for the municipality to grant an exemption from beach protection in a certain area, you need to submit an application to us.

An application must contain:

  • Name, address and telephone number.
  • the name of the property on which the measure is to be carried out
  • Description and sketch of what you intend to do.
  • Map and description of the area concerned.
  • the purpose of the measure
  • Specific reason justifying the request for exemption.
  • a description justifying that the derogation does not affect the purpose of the shoreline protection provisions.

The application for exemption is examined by the municipal council. The assessment involves a site visit, a description of the natural values of the site, an assessment of special reasons, etc. The cost of the assessment is charged according to the current tariff for planning and building activities.