Caring for Scotland's marine environment

Scotland’s coastal and marine environment is spectacular and diverse. With over 18,000km of coastline, in excess of 900 islands, and a great variety of coastal and marine habitats and wildlife that need to be cared for.

Marine Protection

The Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 brought in a mechanism for creating new protected sites for both natural and historic interests of national importance and for their sustainable management. These are known as Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) and combined with the SSSI, Ramsar and Natura 2000 network of sites form the Scottish Marine Protected Areas network.

Marine Renewables

Scotland’s seas are a great source of renewable energy and renewable developments are an important part of the transformative change required if Scotland is to reach its legally binding target of being ‘net zero’ by 2045. We value the contribution that offshore renewable developments (wave, tidal and offshore wind) can make to the decarbonisation of the energy sector. These technologies are, however, still relatively new and it's important to understand their impact on the environments they are deployed in. It is important that offshore renewables are deployed in ways that do not significantly damage the marine environment and its wildlife.