Marine Spatial Planning
Marine spatial planning is a process which manages human activity in the marine environment to achieve social, ecological and economic objectives. At the NAFC we have expertise in the using the ecosystem approach to engage with the general public and public/private organisations in the management of the marine environment. Using scientific data to underpin policies and recognising the equal value of economic, environmental and social factors in maintaining a healthy marine environment the marine spatial planning team have led the development on marine spatial planning in Shetland, as well working with national and international partners and projects. In addition, the section has developed a number of GIS decision support tools and guidance to enable commercial developers (including aquaculture, oil and gas, and renewables) to identify areas suitable for development, and to reduce conflict with other users including fisheries.
Marine spatial planning requires a multi-disciplinary approach and the expertise within the team range from seabed mapping, GIS mapping, invasive species monitoring to policy development. The team works with government and industry to deliver a range of projects and services.