The shipping industry and MSP: an operational guide to risks and rewards

Abstract: 

Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) will become an increasingly important issue for the shipping sector over the next few years. Maritime professionals need to engage with other users of ocean space from both a sea and shore perspective, and to take part in international, regional and local MSP debate, to ensure that the needs of the sector are taken into full consideration. MSP discussions are taking place at strategic levels on an international, regional and national basis. However the finer details of where to place a fish farm, off shore wind generation field, environmentally protected zone or shipping lane will ultimately depend on local debate.

The Nautical Institute, together with the World Ocean Council, has put together an operational guide to the risks and benefits connected with the shipping industry that should be considered during the MSP process. This guidance seeks to outline some of the many opportunities for engagement and issues to consider, and has been specifically produced to aid maritime professionals to participate in MSP developments.

Sea Basin(s): 
Year: 
2013
Application in MSP: 
Unknown effect
Sectors: 
Shipping
Type of practice: 
Guidance
Stage of MSP cycle: 
Vision and aims
Stocktake
Analyse spatial aspects
Develop and implement plan

Questions this practice may help answer

  • What is Maritime Spatial Planning?
  • How can shipping contribute to the MSP process?
  • Why should the shipping industry get involved in MSP?
  • What shipping-related issues should MSP consider?

Implementation Context

The Nautical Institute, together with the World Ocean Council, has put together an operational guide to the risks and benefits connected with the shipping industry that should be considered during the MSP process. The guide seeks to outline some of the many opportunities for engagement and issues to consider, and has been specifically produced to aid maritime professionals to participate in MSP developments. Published in 2013, this guide has been developed when global MSP was still in an early stage and might not always fully reflect the latest developments.  

Aspects / Objectives

The objective is to provide guidance to maritime professionals from the shipping sector for taking part in MSP processes.

Method

The publication provides step-by-step guidance to MSP development and presents the key considerations and contribution of the shipping sector at each step of the MSP process. In addition, the guide is complemented by three concrete case studies that provide concrete examples of the involvement of the shipping in MSP:

  1. Adjusting the Boston shipping lane to protect endangered whales and improve shipping safety
  2. Shipping fairways off the north-west coast of Australia
  3. Netherlands summary of the international regulation and guidelines for maritime spatial planning related to safe distances to multiple offshore structures 

Main Outputs / Results

The operational guide identifies the risks and rewards connected with the shipping industry that should be considered during the MSP process.

Challenges the shipping industry faces in MSP:

  • Adaptation of MSP to international waterswith significant implications for international shipping 
  • Limited understanding of the MSP process and momentum behind the input to MSP from others. 
  • Limited engagement of the industry in stakeholder processes
  • Lack of means for engaging the broader maritime business community on marine management and sustainability issues

Contributions of the shipping industry in each phase of MSP:

  • Share scientific information and data on resources and ecological processes that may not otherwise be available to planners.
  • To define and analyse the existing conditions, include AIS data, Radar, visual surveys, and possibly data from ship reporting schemes, satellite tracking, meteorological offices and data held by local ports, VTS and pilot.
  • Consider potential changes to shipping without any MSP changes or with the variety of MSP options available.
  • Formulate Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Relevant and Time Bound objectives.
  • Communicate outcomes to all maritime transport, comply with IMO, IALA and IHO recommendations, and identify responsibilities for ships or shore-based operators.
  • Monitor effects in terms of ship tracking, safety issues, and any impact on local or regional commercial shipping concerns.
  • Use monitoring processes to identify the need for future change or refinement.

Sector-specific issues to consider in MSP:

  • Manoeuvring characteristics

    • Traffic densities, reduced visibility, presence of leisure crafts, accidental course deviation,  weather, interference on radar, ship characteristics (draft, limited maneuverability, length of round turn)
  • Width of shipping lanes
    • Standard turning circles for vessels are six times the ship’s length.
    • Requirements for stopping in an emergency
    • Possibility of ships overtaking
  • Navigation issues
    • Increased traffic density in increasingly constricted water space
    • Greater demands to navigate closer to navigational hazards
    • Interference with visibility or radar conspicuity
    • New services and improved technology, potential of cheaper communication
  • Environmental and commercial impact 
    • Rerouting of commercial traffic to achieve other benefits for society
    • Need forrisk assessment tools
    • Environmental impacts include emissions, toxins, marine sound, scouring effects, consequences from accidents and grounding, knock-on effects on other transport chains
    • Commercial considerations: rerouting can lead to increased fuel costs, ship operation costs, and changes to the competitive advantage of local ports, logistics chains or the intermodal transport links.

Responsible Entity 

The Nautical Institute, in collaboration with the World Ocean Council

Contact person

David Patraiko

 djp@nautinst.org

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