Shetland Islands Marine Spatial Plan

UK CP

Scotland - MSP process

Abstract: 

Sets out policies and criteria against which planning applications and works licences will be considered; provides policy framework to guide marine development and activity out to 12 nautical miles. SIMSP may also provide a resource for all users of the marine environment including developers, planners and regulators.

Country: 
Year: 
2015
Application in MSP: 
Unknown effect
Sectors: 
Not sector specific
Type of practice: 
Pilot plan
Cross-border / trans-national aspect: 
No

Questions this practice may help answer

  • What information is available to support the siting and decision making regarding marine activities in Shetland?
  • How can marine activities be developed in Shetland, in accordance with local planning policy?
  • How can impacts and negative interactions best be minimised when developing marine activities in Shetland?
  • How was marine planning undertaken in Shetland?

Implementation Context

The purpose of this MSP is to set out policies and further a spatial strategy and policy framework to guide marine developments in the coastal waters around Shetland. Marine spatial planning in Scotland and Shetland is evolving and the SIMSP continues to ensure the sustainable management of the marine environment in these changing times. In the future marine planning will be implemented at a local level within Scottish Marine Regions extending out to 12 nautical miles. The Scottish Marine Regions (SMRs) will be created under secondary legislation. The Scottish Marine Regions Order 2013 identifies and establishes their boundaries and is expected to come in to force later in 2014 or early 2015. It is envisaged that Shetland will become a statutory Scottish Marine Region. In the interim this SG in conjunction with the LDP sets out the policies and criteria against which planning applications and work licences for marine related development submitted in Shetland will be considered.

Aspects / Objectives

The Shetland Islands Council has adopted the fourth edition of the Shetland Islands’ Marine Spatial Plan (SIMSP) as ‘Supplementary Guidance’ to the Shetland Local Development Plan. The Shetland Local Development Plan together with any Supplementary Guidance sets out the policies and criteria against which planning applications and works licences submitted in Shetland will be considered.

The SIMSP provides an overarching policy framework to guide marine development and activity out to 12 nautical miles. It incorporates authoritative spatial data on the marine environment, its various uses and assets.

The policies and maps in the SIMSP will be material considerations in decision-making on individual marine planning applications and works licences within Shetland’s coastal and marine waters out to 12 nautical miles. It is hoped the SIMSP will also provide a useful resource for all users of the marine environment including developers, planners and regulators.

Method

The Shetland Marine Spatial Plan (SMSP) was first developed in 2006 under the auspices of the Scottish Sustainable Marine Environment Initiative (SSMEI) marine spatial planning pilot programme. The SSMEI program ended in 2010 but the NAFC, with support from partners, has developed further iterations of the plan, which is intended to fulfil the requirements or Regional Marine Planning in Scotland.

Main Outputs / Results

The final plan is available online:

https://www.nafc.uhi.ac.uk/research/msp/simsp/simsp

Downloadable documents include:

  • Shetland Islands' Marine Spatial Plan (SIMSP) - 4th edition (2015)
  • SIMSP Strategic Environmental Assessment - Environmental Report
  • SIMSP Strategic Environmental Assessment – Non-Technical Summary
  • SIMSP Habitats Regulation Appraisal - Record
  • SIMSP Strategic Environmental Statement - Post Adoption Statement

And some spatial data is also available to download for use with GIS or Google Earth.

Transferability

This project focusses specifically on the Shetland Islands marine area, however, as MSP is emerging in many areas, the lessons learnt will be of wider relevance, predominantly across other regions of Scotland and perhaps other areas in Europe.

Responsible Entity

North Atlantic Fisheries College (NAFC) Marine Centre

Costs / Funding Source

Marine Scotland and the NAFC Marine Centre.

Contact Person

Rachel Shucksmith

NAFC

Marine Spatial Planning Manager
Tel: 01595 772492
Email: rachel.shucksmith@uhi.ac.uk

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