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Related Links

The following links will take you to sites that contain freely available shape and KML files for downloading - please ensure you read the respective terms and conditions for each of the websites.

British Geological Survey

The British Geological Survey has maps of onshore bedrock geology and superficial deposits at 1:625 000 scale in shape and KML file formats available for download.

The British Geological Survey Geoindex provides an overview of the Marine Geoscience data held by the BGS.  Data can be viewed and queried through an interactive map.  Several Marine Scotland datasets can also be accessed through the Geoindex.

CARIS Easy View

CARIS Easy View is a free CARIS viewer for 2D and 3D data. This software can be used to view bathymetric data as well as other spatial data formats.

The Crown Estate

The Crown Estate has GIS shape files and PDF maps that can be downloaded via their Marine maps and GIS data pages

The Marine Data Exchange provides access to survey data and reports collated during the planning, building and operating of offshore renewable energy projects.  The Crown Estate has made this data available online. Many spatial datasets, including bathymetry and shapefiles, can be found on this service.

Department of Energy and Climate Change Atlas of UK Marine Renewable Energy Resources (DECC)

The Atlas represents a regional description of potential marine energy resources in UK waters at a national scale, and will be used to help guide policy and planning decisions for future site leasing rounds. Wave, tide and wind resource information is available as shape and text files.

European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC)

The European Marine Energy Centre is based in Orkney and provides a number of test sites for developers to test their equipment in a range of situations. The EMEC website provides information on the developers involved as well as live data from the test sites.

The Fishing Liaison with Offshore Wind and Wet Renewables Group (FLOWW)

FLOWW was set up to foster good relations between the fishing and offshore renewable energy sectors and encourage co-existence of the industries, FLOWW's objectives are to share knowledge on issues arising from the interaction of the fishing industry and offshore renewables activity, share and develop best practice, and liaise with other sectors with interests in the marine environment.

Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC)

The Joint Nature Conservation Committee holds the officially submitted version of the boundaries of areas designated for conservation interest including SACs, SPAs, offshore SACs and Ramsar sites.

The distribution of seabirds at sea, seabird colonies, sea ducks and cetaceans can also be downloaded as text files.

Mapping European Seabed Habitats (MESH)

MESH aims to collate and standardise habitat maps for the seas around north-west Europe and provide access to those maps to support the management of the marine environment. Predicted habitat maps using the EUNIS classification system are available as shape files.

Maritime Coastguard Agency (MCA)

The Civil Hydrography Programme is coordinated by the Maritime Coastguard Agency to ensure accurate hydrographic information is gathered for updating UK nautical charts and publications:

The UK Civil Hydrography Programme Bathymetry Atlas (CHP Bathy Atlas) also makes use of Google Earth to display the results of seabed mapping carried out under the CHP using multibeam echosounder technology. The KMZ downloads provide bathymetry for 11 geographic regions and 4 routine re-survey (RRS) areas.

A shape file that identifies sites that have been surveyed or are planned to be surveyed is also available.

Further information and downloads from the Civil Hydrography programme and other hydrographic projects can be found on the MCA hydrography pages.

Marine Data Exchange (Crown Estate)

The Marine Data Exchange provides access to survey data and reports collated during the planning, building and operating of offshore renewable energy projects.

Marine Environmental Data & Information Network (MEDIN)

The Marine Environmental Data & Information Network is a partnership of UK organisations committed to improving access to marine data. Users can access and submit data. Metadata guidance is also available

Marine Environmental Mapping Programme (MAREMAP)

The Marine Environmental Mapping Programme (MAREMAP) initiative aims to improve our understanding of the seabed environment around the UK through the development of detailed seabed and geological information. Interactive maps are available from their Website.

National Biodiversity Network Gateway

The National Biodiversity Network (NBN) Gateway brings together a large number of national datasets on species distribution both terrestrial and marine. Georeferenced data can be downloaded as text files.


The OneGeology portal creates a dynamic digital geological map of the world using GeoSciML. Geological data can be also be viewed and exported as KML files.

Renewable UK

Renewable UK is a renewable energy trade association that provides support to the development of wind and marine energy. Their website offers information on all types of renewable energy and details on conferences and exhibitions.

Scotland's Environment Interactive Map (SEWeb)

Scotland's Environment Interactive Map provides information on many environmental factors including Marine developments around Scotland.

Scottish Coastal Archaeology and the Problem of Erosion (SCAPE)

SCAPE aims to research, conserve and promote the archaeology of Scotland's coast, concentrating on remains that are threatened by coastal erosion. Information on various projects can also be found here

Scotland's Coastal Heritage at Risk Project (SCH@RP)

Scotland's coastal heritage at risk is a project, developed by SCAPE, aimed at getting more people involved in the effort to monitor coastal erosion.   This website includes information about taking part and an interactive map displaying sites at risk.

Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH)

Scottish Natural Heritage provides shape and KML files of conservation interest (e.g. SSSI, SPA, SAC, NNR etc) for download via registration.

Ship Tracking

Automated Identification Systems are used to track many ships around the world.  This information is also available to the public through website such as Marine Traffic or Ship AIS.  Both offer interactive maps and information on the vessels on screen.  Ship AIS covers the UK whilst Marrine Traffic covers much of the world.