Key Scottish Environment Statistics 2012

This publication aims to provide an easily accessible reference document which offers information on a wide range of environmental topics. It covers key datasets on the state of the environment in Scotland, with an emphasis on the trends over time wherever possible.

This document is part of a collection

Marine - Footnotes

1) The number of bathing waters identified in Scotland has not remained constant in the period 1988 to 2011. There were 23 identified coastal bathing waters from 1988 to 1998, but this number has since increased from 60 in 1999 to 83 in 2011, when one new bathing water was added. Three of the 83 designated waters are inland waters, which have all complied with the bathing water standards since designation.

2) The data for the fish stocks are the current best estimates of each stock and not the historic estimates. The full time series is revised for each stock every time an assessment is re-run and although values at the most recent end of the time series may change markedly in some cases, most other values remain stable.

3) It is the nature of fish stock assessments that the most recent year's estimates are also the least certain, and subject to revision when subsequent years' data become available.

4) Estimates for cod, haddock and herring are for the North Sea (NS) stock. Those for saithe are for the North Sea and West of Scotland (WoS) stock.

5) The spawning stock biomass (SSB) is the total weight of mature fish (capable of spawning) in a particular stock.

6) The precautionary biological limit (Bpa) indicates the SSB below which the stock is considered to be at risk of suffering reduced reproductive capacity, indicating that spawning levels may be insufficient to guarantee stock replenishment and that stock abundance will probably decrease. The Bpa for each stock is defined by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES).

7) More information on management measures applied to fishing activity in Scotland can be found by visiting


Email: Sandy McPhee

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