Finland's main environmental issues are air and water pollution, and the preservation of its wildlife. Finland's principal environmental agency is the Ministry of the Environment, established in 1983. Beginning in 1987, environmental protection boards were established for every community with more than 3,000 inhabitants. To preserve the shoreline profile, 30–50% of the shores suitable for recreational use may not be built on. Industrial pollutants from within the country and surrounding countries affect the purity of both the nation's air and water supplies. In 1996 carbon dioxide emissions from industrial sources totaled 59.1 million metric tons. Acid rain from high concentrations of sulfur in the air has damaged the nation's lakes. Finland's cities produce about 2.8 million tons of solid waste per year. The nation has 107 cubic kilometers of renewable water resources with 82% used for industry and 17% used in domestic and urban areas. In 1993, the Finnish Council of State introduced new approaches to the control of water pollution. Lead-free gasoline was introduced in 1985.
Care is taken to protect the flora and fauna of the forests, which are of recreational as well as economic importance. Closed hunting seasons, nature protection areas, and other game-management measures are applied to preserve threatened animal species. As of 2001, 5.5% of Finland's total land area was protected. In 2001, 4 of the nation's 60 mammal species and 4 of its 248 breeding bird species were threatened, as well as 1 type of freshwater fish. Endangered species include the Siberian sturgeon, European mink, and the Saimaa ringed seal.