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    Nature Conservation Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are designated by Scottish Ministers under the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010. These possible MPAs have been approved by Scottish Ministers for public consultation. As such, the locations are afforded policy protection as if they were designated. The boundaries of the possible MPAs presented in this dataset represent those being consulted upon within both the 12 nautical mile Territorial Sea limit (on the basis of advice provided by Scottish Natural Heritage - the Scottish Government's adviser on all aspects of nature and landscape across Scotland) and in the UK offshore waters adjaent to Scotland (on the basis of advice provided by the Joint Nature Conservation Committee- the statutory adviser to UK Government and devolved administrations on UK-wide and international nature conservation). The following URLs provide links to the consultation process websites:, and