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marine planning

These pages are no longer being updated. Any updates will be published in the Marine Planning section on gov.scot

Marine (Scotland) Act

On 10 March 2010, Scotland's Marine Bill received Royal Assent, making it the Marine (Scotland) Act.

This marks a major turning point in safeguarding the future of Scotland's seas and laying the foundations for a more simplified marine planning and licensing system.

The Marine (Scotland) Act provides a framework which will help balance competing demands on Scotland's seas. It introduces a duty to protect and enhance the marine environment and includes measures to help boost economic investment and growth in areas such as marine renewables.

The main measures include:

  • Marine planning: a new statutory marine planning system to sustainably manage the increasing, and often conflicting, demands on our seas
  • Marine licensing: a simpler licensing system, minimising the number of licences required for development in the marine environment to cut bureaucracy and encourage economic investment
  • Marine conservation: improved marine nature and historic conservation with new powers to protect and manage areas of importance for marine wildlife, habitats and historic monuments
  • Seal conservation: much improved protection for seals and a new comprehensive licence system to ensure appropriate management when necessary
  • Enforcement: a range of enhanced powers of marine conservation and licensing

Bill Timeline

Introduced: 29 April 2009