State service portal
Information published on 3.12.2020.
Our daily choices and activities often have a greater impact on the environment than we think, so it is important to be aware of the key environmental and nature protection principles. In the modern era of information, getting involved in nature and environmental protection is becoming more and more straightforward with a variety of digital tools.
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Latvia has specified special conservation nature areas (SPAs) - national parks, biosphere reserves, nature parks, protected landscape areas, nature closures, nature reserves, natural monuments and protected marine areas. The protection of specially protected species and habitats shall also consist of micro-reserves. More detailed information on the classification of protected areas is available at the website of the Nature Conservation Authority (DAP). Requirements for the Protection of Protected Areas depending on the type of territory, the general conditions can be found in the Law on Specially Protected Nature Areas.
Data on specially protected nature areas, habitats and species are available at the natural data management system OAK. The information can be browsed in the map form by closing the desired information level and selecting the records by parameters of interest. You can zoom in and out of the desired area on the map. The system displays natural data, such as a specific area category — nature conservation. In this way, you can investigate whether there are any nature protected areas in the vicinity of your residence.
Protected habitats are rare or special land or water areas at the level of Latvia or the European Union, with only representative environmental conditions and plant and animal species. For example, such habitats are gray and wooded sea dunes, many decades of traditionally managed grasslands and pastures, natural developments of old forests, natural rivers and lakes. The list of types of specially protected habitats is specified in Cabinet Regulation No. 350 of 20 June 2017 Regulations regarding the List of Specially Protected Habitats Types.
If you are interested in the development, consultation and validity of local government spatial plans, use the portal Geolatvia in section “Spatial development planning”. You have the opportunity to participate in public consultations on the programming document by submitting proposals electronically, as well as to receive notices on the drafting of documents of interest. Also on the portal Geolatvia.lv is available a Map Explorer in which you can view the selected information using the different layers of information on the Latvian map. This way, for example, you can select data from public layers about the groundwater areas of Latvia, deposits of mineral resources of national importance etc.
A convenient tool for viewing various cards, sites and objects is the free mobile app developed by AS “Latvian State Forests” (LVM) LVM GEO Mobile which can be downloaded in Google Play or App Store stores. In the app, you can view environmental areas, tourism sites, different types of geographic maps, forest data, and more.
Similar types of information on tourism sites and nature protected areas can also be found in cards produced by LVM available on websites Mammadabakarte.lv and Lvmgeo.lv.
If you are interested directly in nature tourism, a free mobile app Natural tourism developed by the DAP is a preferred helper in the planning of a rush or outing in nature, the app is downloadable Google Play and in App Store. Similarly, information on nature and tourism opportunities is available at Dodies.lv geographical map.
The carrying out of various activities or measures in specially protected nature areas shall be subject to the written authorisation or consent of the DAP. For example, if you want to organise a public event in a protected nature area, carry out a scientific study or forest management, you should submit an application for DAP. The application form for the performance of activities or measures in specially protected nature areas shall be accessible in DAP website. With secure electronic signature you may send a signed application to e-address or the official email.
Protected trees, dendrological plantings, alleys, geological and geomorphological formations are classified as natural monuments.
Trees to be protected shall be regarded as trees, large and old trees, having a nature conservation, cultural history, educational or scientific function. Information on studies and records of tree trees is available at DAP material.
Using Natural Data Management System OAK map, you can see which areas of Latvia are growing, as well as to add your findings on the map. On the website of the Latvian National Hundred Year Programme, in the section LV100 Detaining you can find a guide for measuring dickwood, and you can fill out entertaining test. If you want to be involved in the preservation of the trees, please refer to the Latvian Natural Fund Two-tree release guides.
In Latvia 89 dendrological and cultural sites have been identified as natural monuments - dendrological plantings, which are suitable for public education and recreation. More insight into the diversity of Latvia's dendrological plantings is provided by the DAP descriptions of dendroological plantations.
The approved list of protected avenues contains 64 avenues (Cabinet Regulation No. 888 of 22 November 2005 Regulations Regarding Protected Alleys”). DAP prepared the list where you can get a closer look at the descriptions of these avenues.
On the other hand, the list of protected geological and geomorphological monuments includes 214 territories, which include bedrock outcrops, caves, sources, waterfalls, individual terrain forms, as well as other geologically important formations (Cabinet Regulation No. 175 of 17 April 2001 Regulations regarding geological and geomorphological nature monuments to be protected”).
An insight into the diversity of geological and geomorphological formations is provided by the DAP descriptions of geological and geomorphological formations.
Geospatial data of protected geological and geomorphological nature monuments are available in the natural data management system OAK.
Plant protection in the context of this description understands the nature conservation of special and rare plants.
The first prerequisite for you to be able to participate in the conservation of protected plants is to be able to recognize these plants. Specially protected species and captive specially protected species are referred to in Cabinet Regulation No. 396 of 14 November 2000 “Provisions regarding the list of specially protected species and specially protected species to be restricted”. Descriptions of the species to be protected may be sought in the Latvian Red Paper, in which data on rare and threatened plants, mushrooms and animals are available together. The Latvian Red Book is available only in printed format. Information on plant and animal species found in Latvia is available in digital form In the Encyclopedia of Latvian Species. Species protection requirements are specified in Species and Habitats Protection Law, including the removal and grubbing of protected species, any targeted catching or killing, keeping in captivity, selling, destroying or damaging breeding sites, deliberate destruction of habitats, etc., shall be prohibited.
In portal Dabasdati.lv it shall be possible for everyone to report on plants, mushrooms and animals observed in nature, as well as to look at reports of other people's observations. Use the portal section Observation Selection to select observations of interest to you according to different criteria. For example, in the menu, select “specially protected species”, group – plants, observation date: from – to. As a result, the observation data displayed on the map will be available. Perform a search and inspect the plants or animals to be protected in the vicinity of you. When you register with the portal Dabasdati.lv, you have the opportunity to report your personal observations in nature.
You can also report your observations to Dabasdati.lv with free Dabasdati.lv mobile app which can be downloaded in Google Play and App Store. True, the app only foresees the possibility of submitting an observation, or looking at other observations. With the Dabasdati.lv portal and mobile app capabilities, you can report unfamiliar plants, animals, and, when you receive a response from natural specialists, find out exactly what you have observed, and whether it has protected plant or animal status. Read more about how to add nature observations on the portal Dabasdati.lv. The data reported in the portal are used in nature conservation (identification of specially protected species deposits, expert opinions, nature conservation plans for specially protected nature areas, population status reports) and research.
If you are engaged in agriculture and you encounter an adverse effect of protected animals in your activity, such as a protected animal caused damage to your holding by postponing the harvest, you have the right to apply for compensation. In order to apply for compensation, you must submit an application to the Nature Conservation Board (DAP). Application forms are available at DAP website. With secure electronic signature you may send a signed application by e-address or to the official email of the institution.
Invasive plants and animals are non-representative species of Latvian nature that threaten local species, cause economic damage or damage to human health and the environment. Invasive species are distributed as a result of natural processes (spreading to plant seed) or human deliberate or unconscious activity. In DAP website is available more information on invasive plant species in Latvia.
A typical example of invasive species in Latvia is Sosnovsky hogweed, the distribution of which in the territory of Latvia you can look at the State Plant Protection Service (SPPS) prepared map. If you want to announce an area infested with hogweed, use the SPPS website application form for the monitoring of hogweed. The form for electronic information shall be intended for anyone other than landowners and possessors. If you are the owner or possessor of the land, use the application form available in the service description “Reporting of the spread of Sosnovsky hogweed in your own ownership or legal possession”. With secure electronic signature you can send a signed application to an institution e-address or official e-mail address.
In Animal Protection Law it is stated that the ethical responsibility of humanity is to ensure the welfare and protection of animals of all species, since each individual is a value in itself. A man has a moral obligation to respect any creature, to treat animals with sensitive understanding and to protect them. No one is allowed to kill, cause pain, cause suffering or otherwise harm an animal without a justified reason.
It is prohibited to capture and keep in captivity wild amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals, with the exception of Animal Protection Law and nature protection and hunting cases specified in regulatory enactments. It is prohibited to train and use wild animals (both wild and captive) as an entertainment animal and to show them publicly as an entertainment animal. If you have witnessed the unauthorised holding of wild animals in captivity or their use in entertainments, report the infringement to Food Veterinary Service (PVD). You can also submit a message in the form of an application, most easily by electronic means on the portal Latvija.lv using a free e-service Application to the Authority. With secure digital signature you can also send an application to an institution e-address or official e-mail.
One of the organisations in Latvia dealing with the conservation of natural diversity, including the protection of plants, animals and other species, is Latvian Fund for Nature. The Fund shall implement various types of campaigns and public awareness activities. For example, you can keep track of the Latvian Natural Fund website live broadcasting from protected bird nests throughout the year. Live broadcasts from the sockets are also available in the Youtube Channel. You can comment on what happens in the socket in the Dabasdati.lv Forum in Latvian and in the Looduskalender.ee Forum in English. Also, the “Latvian State Forests” (LVM) project “Birds and Beasts in the Swams” live broadcasts provides an opportunity to keep track of the current events in bird nests and swamps.
Assistance shall be provided to sick and injured animals if necessary, even in the presence of a practising veterinarian, which shall be determined by Article 7 of the Animal Protection Act. But if you encounter a wild animal in distress, injured or helpless, for example, somewhere sunken or jammed, contact one of the competent authorities:
Hunting has a major impact on both natural and human interests and is subject to regulation. In order to ensure the conservation of animals in nature, the limit for game animals has been set for a specific period of time, as well as various other hunting restrictions.
The main rules governing hunting are: Hunting Law and Hunting rules. To become a hunter and participate in the hunt, you must receive:
National Forest Service (VMD) issue hunter's or hunting driving licence to persons who have settled the relevant examination the Hunters' Examiner Commission.
The hunters' examination may be conducted in any of the VMD's superforests. Not later than 5 days prior to the examination, you must submit an application for the hunting examination to the relevant general forest office and pay the State fee for taking the examination. The application must be accompanied by a copy of the training course statement, one photograph (3 × 4 cm) and a document certifying payment of the State fee (if it has not been paid on VMD website). With secure electronic signature signed application with attachments may be sent to general forestry e-address or e-mail.
When the theoretical part of the examination has been successfully completed, the practical examination in the shooting range is followed by shooting with a smooth-bore hunting weapon (shotgun).
To become the driver of the hunt, the hunter's certificate must first be obtained and then the VMD needs to pass the hunting driver's exam. This exam has the right to be sorted by hunters with a 3-year seniority. The hunting driver's examination may be prepared independently.
As well as prior to the taking of the hunter's examination, the VMD superforest must submit an application for the hunting driver's examination (not later than five days prior to the examination) before taking the examination. One photograph (3 × 4 cm) and a document certifying payment of the State fee (if it has not been paid by the WMD) shall be attached to the application. With secure electronic signature a signed application with attachments may be sent to general forestry e-address or e-mail.
The examination schedule for the year concerned, as well as the application forms are available on the VMD website.
The hunters' season card is a document that gives the right to hunt with hunting firearms and hunting gear during a given hunting season. The hunter's seasonal card can be obtained on site when arriving at VMD forestry. Similarly, the hunter's seasonal card can be requested and received electronically in all VMD forestry. To do this, do the following:
The VMD will check the validity of the hunter's certificate and issue the hunter's seasonal card within 30 days by sending it electronically signed with a secure electronic signature to the email address specified in your application, or e-address.
Hunting with hunting firearms may be carried out by hunters who have a permit for the possession of a hunting firearm issued by the State Police Authority. Before the purchase of a first-time hunting firearm:
To be allowed to purchase, store and use a hunting firearm, you must:
More information on the purchase, possession and circulation of firearms is available at:
It is necessary to submit a permit for the purchase or possession of a hunting firearm application to the State Police and to pay State fee. With a secure electronic signature you can send a signed application to an institution e-address or official e-mail address. More information on the issue of weapons permits to individuals is available on the portal Latvija.lv.
If you want to check the details of your gun holding permissions, use the free e-service on the portal Latvija.lv Weapons registration, authorisation, licence and certificate validation.
In order to ensure that hunting rights users have continuous access to information on their/their hunting stations, they have the possibility to enter into a contract with the WMD on the use of the Geographical Information System of the State Forest Service. The contract can be prepared electronically and signed with secure electronic signature. Initially, the preparation of the draft agreement must be ensured - the user of the hunting rights / authorized person must send information on concluding the WMD Geographic Information System Agreement in electronic format (template) to the e-address or e-mail address email@example.com. The preparation and signature of the contract will be provided afterwards. The granting of the rights of the user of the register shall be subject to a fixed fee within the calendar year in accordance with VMD Price List. The right of access provides for the possibility to submit online changes to the area of the hunting station, i.e. to submit information on hunting contracts with forest owners or legal possessors, to obtain a summary in the form of a list of current hunting agreements, to view the current hunting agreements on the map and to download the geographical and textual data of the hunting area.
VMD, based on population status assessment data for game, determines annually a permitted hunting of animals of limited feathered game species in hunting areas. Wild game species and hunting deadlines shall be determined in Hunting rules.
If illegal hunting has occurred, persons who perform supervision of compliance with the regulatory enactments regulating hunting and hunting control shall be entitled to arrest a person and to remove firearms, ammunition, hunting tools and hunting products.
If you've become a witness to illegal hunting, report it VMD or Sate police.
Fishing, fishing, fishing, underwater hunting and fishing are subject to regulation in order to ensure the conservation of fish species in nature. The limits of the fish and cancers to be obtained have been established for a specific period of time, as well as various other restrictions on fishing, warping, underwater hunting and fishing.
Before engaging in fishing, fishing, underwater hunting or fishing, note that the procedures for these activities are also determined by Cabinet Regulation No. 800 of 22 December 2015 Rules for fishing, fishing and underwater hunting. On the other hand, fisheries are regulated by Fishery law and the Cabinet regulations resulting therefrom. Fishing within the meaning of the Fisheries Law is an action to acquire fish using industrial gears – different types of nets, pots, etc. Fishing shall be allocated to own-consumption fishing and commercial fishing. This breakdown also establishes the rights and obligations to be respected.
Fishing, hunting and underwater hunting for his or her consumption shall have the right of a person who is present at the time of fish and cancer:
A fishing, fishing and underwater hunting card shall not be required for persons under 16 years of age and older than 65 years, as well as persons with disabilities.
Cabinet Regulation No. 800 of 22 December 2015 Rules for fishing, fishing and underwater hunting provides for more information regarding the extent of the fishing catch allowed, closing places and times, as well as permitted/prohibited angling techniques. Report any irregularities observed in fishing to National Environmental Service (VVD) or State police.
Natural persons and legal persons of the Republic of Latvia may engage in fishing activities in sea waters if, in compliance with Cabinet Regulation No. 296 of 2 May 2007 Rules on industrial fishing in territorial waters and economic zone waters:
1) a special permit (licence) has been received for commercial activities in the fishery, if it intends to engage in commercial fishing. The licence shall be issued by the Ministry of Agriculture (ZM) (description of the service available on the ZM website and on the portal Latvija.lv);
2) a fishing rights lease agreement has been entered into with the local government regarding fishing in seaside waters (both self-consumption fishermen and commercial fishing). More information is available on municipal websites or portal Latvija.lv. Fishing beyond coastal waters and international waters is subject to the conclusion of a fishing rights lease agreement with the ZM, which is closely linked to the issuing of a licence for commercial fishing activities;
3) a fishing permit has been received. The VVD shall issue fishing licences for fishing until 30 June 2020 (inclusive), but this obligation shall start on 1 July 2020 for municipalities under the Fisheries Act. Changes made in the Integrated System of Fisheries Information and Control of Latvia (LZIKIS) provides that the entry of fishing license agreement and protocol information and other data will automatically generate a fishing license. All fishing licences will be issued in 2020 and can be found in the LZIKIS. On the other hand, for fishing beyond coastal waters and international waters, fishing authorisations, together with an additional authorisation, shall be issued by the ZM (description of the service available at the ZM website).
In order for a fisherman to fish in inland waters - rivers, lakes and water reservoirs, in accordance with Cabinet Regulation No 295 of 2 May 2007 Provisions regarding industrial fishing inland waters the following actions shall be carried out:
1) receive a special permit (licence) for commercial activities in fishing, if commercial fishing activities are planned. The licence shall be issued by the local government;
2) both self-consumption fishing and commercial fishing must conclude a fishing rights lease agreement with the local government for fishing in inland waters;
A fishing rights lease agreement shall not be drawn up and only a fishing permit is necessary if fishing takes place in water bodies in which fishing rights do not belong to the State and the owner of the relevant body of water or his or her authorised person is engaged in fishing, as well as if fishing in the body of water takes place in accordance with the regulatory enactments regarding licensed industrial fishing;
3) a fishing authorisation to be issued by the VVD in accordance with the Fisheries Act by 30 June 2020 (inclusive) and by municipalities as from 1 July 2020;
In the protection and supervision of the VVD fish resources in the inland waters of the Republic of Latvia and the seacoast, it is entitled to involve persons authorised by the VVD - public environmental inspectors. The local government in the protection and supervision of fish resources in internal waters, which are located in the administrative territory thereof, and in seaside waters which lie down to the administrative territory thereof, is entitled to involve persons authorised by the local government - public environmental inspectors. The procedures for granting and revoking the status of a person authorised by the VVD and the local government - a public environmental inspector - the requirements to be set for such person and the model of the certificate, as well as the procedures for the performance of the protection and supervision of fish resources, shall be determined by Cabinet Regulation No. 833 of 4 December 2007 Regulations Regarding Granting and Cancellation of the Status of a Public Environmental Inspectorate, Criteria and Requirements to Be Set, and Sample of a Certificate.
Maintained by the VVD in the register of public environmental inspectors it is possible to check whether a certificate has been issued to a particular inspector. You can also become a public environment inspector, if you do specified requirements. In order to obtain or extend the status of inspector, you must submit to the VVD an application for the granting of the status of an inspector. With a secure electronic signature you may send a signed application to the official body of the institution e-address or email. The status of the public environment inspector shall provide for voluntary activities with specified powers, depending on the scope.
Environmental pollution is a direct consequence for human activity. The more irresponsible and comprehensive the actions of people, the more diverse and wider the environmental pollution we create. The Latvian State Institutions and non-governmental organisations shall take active action in informing the public and by offering the regulations and tools intended for this purpose in order to reduce environmental pollution caused and its impact on the environment.
Free Mobile Application Environment SOS of the National Environmental Service (VVD) is a modern tool that allows you to report environmental violations that you have noticed online. Download this app to online stores Google Play or App Store, photograph the wastes dumped in the forest or any other environmental offences detected, describe it and send the message to the VVD. More information on reporting using the “Environmental SOS” mobile application is available in the description of the life event Participation in public administration and public processes.
If your business includes any kind of polluting activity, you must obtain permission from the VVD to perform it. Polluting activities shall be classified in categories A, B and C, taking into account the quantity and exposure of pollution or the risks to human health and the environment of the activity in question. Further clarification on the categorisation of polluting activities is available in the Law On pollution. You can request the appropriate permission for your situation electronically by using VVD information system “TULIP”.
In Latvia, the procedures for the management and sorting of waste shall be determined in Waste management law. The resulting waste management and sorting guidelines should be followed not only by the authorities responsible for waste management, but also by every citizen who inevitably generates waste during his life.
Taking into account the origin and nature of the waste, it is divided into three main ways:
The territory of Latvia is divided into waste management regions, each of which comprises several waste management companies. Local governments shall be responsible for organising municipal waste management in their administrative territory. Each local government must organise tenders in which it chooses its waste manager. In Green belt Ltd website Atkritumi.lv on the map of Latvia the regions and the waste operators are demonstrated.
Sound waste management is essential for human health and the quality of the environment and should therefore be entrusted to professional operators. Information on where and how waste is properly transferred and sorted may be received by your waste manager. Similarly, producer responsibility systems, such as one, provide extensive information – in Latvian Green Point website Zalais.lv it is possible to find out both the correct sorting of waste and to familiarise yourself with the negative environmental impacts of different types of waste.
Different types of waste also require different approaches to their management. Some waste can be recycled, such as paper, plastic, glass and metal packaging. However, for this type of waste to actually come into recycling, it is necessary to sort and discard it in sorting containers for each type.
Latvia operates waste management systems or producer liability systems which offer merchants an exemption from the payment of the natural resources tax on packaging, disposable tableware and accessories, environmentally harmful goods, including electrical and electronic equipment, ensuring the collection and recovery (recycling) of the generated (marketed) volume, citizens should be more aware that the manufacturer has already paid for the transfer of sorted waste for recycling, so without distinction, citizens pay twice – by purchasing the goods for recycling and without distinction of waste – for the landfill of this waste.
More information on waste sorting options, types of waste, recycling facilities, as well as places of acceptance in Latvia is available on the home page of each waste management system, such as website Atkritumi.lv and AS “Latvian Green Point” sorting card where you can find the nearest waste sorting site. Cards can be used to find the nearest location where a particular type of waste is accepted – glass, plastic, paper, paperboard, metal, batteries, end-of-life tyres, electrical goods, and textile sorting containers – for discarded clothing and fabrics – can also be found on the map.
We want to face a clean, orderly and health-friendly environment when we choose a place to rest. In order to avoid unexpected and unpleasant surprises, it is appropriate to familiarise yourself with publicly available information about the environment in question.
The Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre (LVĢMC) maintains a database of contaminated and potentially contaminated sites on its website. Contaminated, potentially contaminated, as well as sites assessed as deliberate or fully purified are also displayed on the map of contaminated and potentially contaminated sites. The database and the map of contaminated and potentially contaminated sites are available in the “Environment” section of the website of the LVGMC, “Register of contaminated and potentially contaminated sites”, by clicking on the word “Register”. This type of data is also available in a free mobile app PPPV – contaminated sites. The app can be downloaded in Google Play and App Store.
In 2016, LVĢMC carried out a one-off survey at major Latvian water supply sites to assess radon level in drinking water. The results obtained regarding radon concentrations can be examined in the map of specific places of Latvia.
In the LVGMC Flood risk information system Latvia map, it is possible to look at flood risk areas of national importance. To familiarise yourself with the labels used on the map, click the menu on the top right of the page.
If you want to get air quality data, followLVĢMC for monthly information on air quality in Latvian cities.
In order to protect the existence of endangered animals and plant species, almost all United Nations (UN) countries, including Latvia, shall be valid with CITES Convention on international trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora. The CITES Convention totally includes more than 30 thousand wild species. According to their degree of vulnerability, the CITES Convention divides these species into three annexes (I, II, III), while in European Union legislation the species are divided into four annexes (A, B, C, D). List of CITES species in the wild can be consulted on the website of the Nature Conservation Authority (DAP).
In order to export or import into Latvia an animal or plant included in the CITES Convention or products derived therefrom, a special permit shall be required confirming that they have been legally hunted, obtained or bred. Licences shall be issued by each national supervisory authority in matters of the CITES Convention. In Latvia, it is DAP. In order to obtain an authorisation or certificate for international trade in endangered species of wild fauna and flora, you must prepare an application and an appropriate form (Application for a travelling exhibition certificate, Application for CITES permission or Application for a CITES certificate (for use only in the European Community)) and submit to the DAP. With a secure electronic signature signed application may be sent to e-address or the official e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. The State fee must be paid for CITES permission.
Example: You want to import specimens of species included in the CITES Convention into Latvia – shells. You have obtained the required CITES export authorisation from the country on whose territory you legally obtained these shells. When leaving the country where you obtained the shells, the customs official at the border crossing point shall ask you to present the relevant authorisation and to declare the CITES specimen to be exported. When entering Latvia, the Latvian customs official asks you to present an import permit issued by the DAP and to draw up a standard import customs declaration for the introduction of a CITES specimen. You can use, for example, the help of a customs broker or other specialist who provides services related to the completion of customs formalities as a payment service declaration.
Read the website of the National Revenue Service (SRS), in the section “CITES Products (Species of Wild Animals and Plants)”.
If you want to be involved in protecting nature and the environment, look into the Section of the State Employment Agency (NVA) Voluntary Work Information System “Nature and Environment”. The Voluntary Job Selection Tool offers a calendar, as well as the choice of county and city.
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