A 30-year (1971-2000) temperature and salinity climatology is presented for surface and near-bed regions of the NW European shelf seas, with a resolution of 1/6 longitude by 1/10 latitude. The data have been extracted from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) data centre and supplemented by additional records from the World Ocean Data Centre (WODC). From the original data, which are irregularly distributed in space and time, the mean monthly temperature and salinity are calculated, as well as the climatic mean annual cycle. The climatology presented here is an improvement upon all existing climatologies presented in the literature for the NW European shelf; covering a wider area on a finer scale and including the surface and near-bed distribution of both temperature and salinity. Comparison of our data with existing climatologies shows good agreement, with differences occurring where our climatology is an improvement. This climatology, which will prove to be valuable to many users in the marine community will be regularly updated and made available to all users via the ICES data centre.
Demonstration and Research Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are designated by Scottish Ministers under the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010. Sites can be established for the purpose of demonstrating, or carrying out research on sustainable methods of marine management or exploitation in Scottish territorial waters. Their application is not restricted to nature conservation. Proposals will be developed and assessed according to a set of specific guidelines which will examine the scientific case for a MPA, the level of support and the reasons why a MPA is the most appropriate mechanism to use.
The Scottish Marine Regions are 11 areas established for the purposes of regional marine planning, defined by The Scottish Marine Regions Order 2015. These regions are sub-areas of both the "Scottish marine area" defined in the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 and "Scottish inshore region" defined in the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. Marine planning will take place at a local level within these regions, where regional marine planning will be delegated to Marine Planning Partnerships (MPPs).
Areas of search (AoS) have been created using a multi-criteria analysis generated constraint map that shows a range of suitability for offshore wind energy locations. This constraint map is the product of overlaying and weighting 20 relevant layers in a GIS. From the least constrained/most suitable areas some broad zones are drawn. These broad areas are then refined into the AoS by investigating the geographic proximity to important offshore activities and issues. The activities considered to refine the footprint of the broad areas were: fishing, shipping, marine nature protected areas and oil and gas installations. These AoS will serve as guidance to developers and planners as to the most suitable sites for further offshore wind developments in Scottish waters. These sites provide a zone where developments will enjoy minimised obstacles to consenting and licensing whilst still benefitting from adequate resource and appropriate environmental conditions. These sites are recommended by Marine Scotland as places where the consenting and licensing process will be streamlined, expedient and efficient as the likely interactions to be encountered by developers have already been considered. Marine Scotland does not oblige developers to occupy these locations but to consider them as the most appropriate sites.
The 21 Scottish marine regions and offshore marine regions are used for state of the sea assessments. These areas consolidate the existing statutory Scottish Marine Regions with non-statutory offshore marine regions. For the purposes of assessment, the offshore marine regions extend to the continental shelf limits (adjacent to Scotland)
Fishing for razor clams (Ensis spp.) within the Scottish zone is prohibited. For a trial period, Marine Scotland will authorise (under Article 43 of EC Regulation No. 850/1998 and article 4(2) of Scottish SI 2017 No. 419) electrofishing for razor clams (Ensis spp.) in certain areas around Scotland for scientific research.
These layers are the outputs of research which developed a national river temperature model for Scotland capable of predicting both daily maximum river temperature and sensitivity to climate change. The layers show the following: summer_max_tw_2015_16 – Predictions of maximum daily river temperatures for the hottest day between July 2015 and June 2016. summer_max_tw_2003 – Predictions of maximum daily river temperatures for the hottest year in the last 20 years (2003). summer_climate_change_sensitivity – Predictions of the change in river temperature that would result from a 1°C increase in air temperature. A fourth layer has been developed to combine the outputs from “summer_max_tw_2003” and “summer_climate_change_sensitivity” into a single layer that can be used to prioritise management where the relative importance of maximum temperature and temperature change are considered to be equal. This was achieved by (1) dividing the predictions of ‘summer_max_tw_2003’ and ‘summer_climate_change_sensitivity’ into 5 equal categories between the minimum and maximum observed values (2) assigning these categories a value ranging from 1 (the hottest / most sensitive rivers) to 5 (the coolest / least sensitive rivers) (3) sum the rankings (-1) to produce an overall priority ranking (1:9) where rivers ranked as 1 are the highest priority for management (i.e. high river temperature and high climate sensitivity) and 9 the lowest. Management_Priority_Layer – Management priority on a scale of 1:9 where 1 is the highest priority (i.e. high river temperature and high climate sensitivity) and 9 the lowest
The Sectoral Marine Plan aims to identify the most sustainable plan options for the future development of commercial-scale offshore wind energy in Scotland, including deep water wind technologies and covers both Scottish inshore and offshore waters (extending out to the Exclusive Economic Zone limit). The Sectoral Marine seeks to contribute to the achievement of Scottish and UK energy and climate change policy objectives and targets, through the provision of a spatial strategy to inform the seabed leasing process for commercial offshore wind energy in Scottish waters, which: - Minimises the potential adverse effects on other marine users, economic sectors and the environment resulting from further commercial-scale offshore wind development; and - Maximises opportunities for economic development, investment and employment in Scotland, by identifying new opportunities for commercial scale offshore wind development, including deeper water wind technologies. The draft Plan Options ("DPO") provide the spatial footprint for this Sectoral Marine Plan.
Grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) are present around the coast of Scotland in internationally import numbers. They breed on wave-exposed rocky coasts, sometimes on sand or shingle beaches at the foot of cliffs, often on relatively remote islands, with large groups of pregnant females returning to traditional breeding sites in the autumn. This data shows the breeding colonies currently listed with the Sea Mammal Research Unit (SMRU).
The 15 Scottish sea areas are based on areas previously adopted for certain environmental monitoring programmes. The data from these 15 areas can be presented regionally and also reasonably aggregated to form a national picture and to develop information for the two main areas required for the Marine Strategy Framework Directive initial assessment: the Greater North Sea (Area II) and the Celtic Seas (Area III) which are existing sea areas used by OSPAR (the Oslo Paris Convention for the Protection of the North East Atlantic)