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Press release


New HELCOM book explores the variety of marine life in the Baltic Sea


Biodiversity_cover1.jpegHelsinki, 17th March (HELCOM) – The Helsinki Commission today announced the publication of its new book ‘The Baltic Sea – Discovering the sea of life’, which provides the first ever popular overview of the variety of marine life in the Baltic Sea region. The main idea of this HELCOM publication is to convey to the general public the message of a unique and beautiful sea full of life which must be cherished and protected.

The beautiful 105-page hardcover book with a huge selection of stunning high-quality photos, including rare underwater images, invites readers on an exciting journey into the Baltic marine world, to discover fascinating life forms that live so close to us, yet are still unknown to many. The book proves that the Baltic Sea is truly more than meets the eye. It is home to a great variety of wildlife. In addition to seals, porpoises, and seabirds, the sea is also inhabited by many underwater creatures that few of us ever have the chance to see.

The storyline of the book follows the trip of a swan pair around the Baltic Sea – from Denmark, through Germany, Sweden, and Finland in the north and back south through Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia and Poland. The trip takes the reader soaring over the shores of the Baltic Sea with different seabirds and plunging deep into the sea waters to discover strange looking fish and beautiful marine gardens.

To reach a wider audience the book incorporates a two-tier approach. The scientifically accurate but entertaining story is accompanied by enlightening information boxes which provide general facts and figures about the Baltic Sea and different species, as well as about HELCOM’s efforts to conserve the Baltic Sea biodiversity. This makes the book also a reference guide to the Baltic marine life, the environmental problems facing it and the solutions needed in order to restore the health of the sea. Furthermore the book includes information about what has already been accomplished in terms of protection of the Baltic marine environment.

“The book is considered as a ‘must read’ for anyone interested to in the Baltic marine life and the present state of the environment of our sea,” says Anne Christine Brusendorff, Executive Secretary of the Helsinki Commission. ”It emphasizes the beauty and fragility of the Baltic Sea’s marine life while highlighting environmental challenges and the need for protective measures.”

The text of the book is written by Helena Telkänranta, a Finnish science journalist and author specialising in nature and conservation and edited by a team of HELCOM experts, and the overall layout of the book is designed by Leena Närhi of Bitdesign, also from Finland. More than 100 photos by dozens of photographers from all over the Baltic Sea region are used in the book. The making of this book has been partially funded by the European Community.

For more information and to order the book, please
- visit www.helcom.fi/press_office/en_GB/bookorder/ or
- call +358 (0)207 412 649.
To receive a copy of the book for review in your publication, please submit a request by e-mail. To see the PDF file of the book, click here.


Note to Editors:

The Helsinki Commission, or HELCOM, works to protect the marine environment of the Baltic Sea from all sources of pollution through intergovernmental co-operation between the countries bordering the sea - Denmark, Estonia, the European Community, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Sweden. 

HELCOM is the governing body of the "Convention on the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Baltic Sea Area," more usually known as the Helsinki Convention.


For more information, please contact: 

Nikolay Vlasov

Information Secretary

Tel.: + 358 (0)207 412 635

Fax: +358 (0)207 412 639

E-mail: nikolay.vlasov@helcom.fi