Developing Scotland’s Marine Protected Area network

On 03 December 2020, Scottish Ministers classified 12 Special Protection Areas.


On 03 December 2020, Scottish Ministers classified 12 Special Protection Areas. These will provide protection in the marine environment for Scotland’s rare, vulnerable and regularly occurring migratory birds. They also designated four Marine Protected Areas sites, which will be among the first in the world providing area-based protection of minke whale and basking shark. The sites will also protect Risso’s dolphins and a range of biodiversity and geological features.

The Scottish MPA network includes sites for nature conservation, protection of biodiversity, demonstrating sustainable management, and protecting our heritage. These sites contribute to our MPA network which will now cover a total of 37% of our seas.

MPAs map

Business and Regulatory Impact Assessments (BRIAs)

The North-east Lewis Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area Order 2020

The Sea of the Hebrides Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area Order 2020

The Shiant East Bank Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area Order 2020

The Southern Trench Nature Conservation Marine Protected Area Order 2020

Strategic Impact Assessment: Post Adoption Statement

Island Communities Impact Assessment: Screening

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