Marine Renewables



regional locational guidance

A spatial model has been created, mapping potential areas of lowest constraint for potential wave and tidal energy developments in the planning regime for the waters around Shetland.The model outputs have been used to produce guidance which aims to integrate environmental, cultural, socio-economic considerations into the site selection process for wave and tidal energy devices, and their associated infrastructure (cable landing points).

The model reflects a process of consultation on constraints with local advisors, planners, regulators, communities and developers. It is designed as a decision support tool, to assist in making more informed decisions about where developments are likely to be successful and where they are not. The maps presented do not illustrate clear boundaries between favourable and unfavourable areas for marine development but represent the likelihood of finding suitable locations.


Regional Locational Guidance for Wave and Tidal Energy in the Shetland Islands

Regional Locational Guidance for Wave and Tidal Energy in the Shetland Islands (provides more details of the modelling methodology)

The model output data are also available in GIS format by contacting the Marine Spatial Planning team on 01595 772000 or email

Shetland Islands Regional Marine Plan

This guidance forms part of the Shetland Islands Regional Marine Plan (SIRMP). A marine plan has guided the siting of marine developments in Shetland since 2008. The SIRMP contains spatial data on the marine and coastal environment and its uses, in addition to establishing an overarching policy framework. The spatial extent of the plan includes all territorial waters seaward of mean high water springs, out to 12 nautical miles, but also includes onshore habitats / ecological processes that are clearly affected by marine developments, such as cable landing sites.

Further Information

The Shetland marine energy resource (wave climate and tidal strength) have been mapped in a separate study and report Shetland Islands Wave and Tidal Resource 2011 by Natural Power.

Scottish Government Marine Renewable Energy

Please contact us if you have any questions.