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Regional marine planning

The Marine (Scotland) Act in 2010 introduced a new era for the management of Scotland’s seas and the resulting National Marine Plan (2015) sets the wider context for planning within Scotland, including what should be considered when creating local, regional marine plans.

Eleven Scottish Marine Regions have been created which cover sea areas extending out to 12 nautical miles. Regional marine plans will be developed by Marine Planning Partnerships, allowing more local ownership and decision making about specific issues within their area.

The Scottish Marine Regions can also be seen on the Marine Scotland on-line portal MS Maps NMPi – Limits and Boundaries – Scottish Marine Regions Order 2015 (SMRs).

Regional planning activity

The Scottish Sustainable Marine Environment Initiative (SSMEI) was a unique and innovative approach to marine planning in Scotland. It aimed to develop and test new approaches to improve the sustainable management of Scotland’s marine environment through the establishment of pilot projects.

There are also a number of groups currently involved in marine planning:

  • Marine Spatial Planning Forum
  • Scotland’s Seas Data and Assessment Group
  • Regional Assessments - Pilot Group
  • Marine Strategy Forum
  • Marine Spatial Planning Community Project/Forum (MASTS)
  • Scottish Offshore Renewables Research Framework (SpORRAn)
  • MSFD Scottish monitoring group
  • Marine Scotland Fishing Focus
  • Scottish Coastal Forum
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