This pilot Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters Marine Spatial Plan is the result of a successful collaboration between Marine Scotland, Orkney Islands Council and the Highland Council. This working group undertook, in advance of statutory regional marine plans, a pilot process for setting up a planning policy framework.
Our seas and coast are an integral part of day-to-day life in this area and play a significant role in the local economy, transportation, recreation and unique way of life. This pilot Marine Spatial Plan marks an important milestone in the ongoing sustainable management of our marine environment. Marine planning will help decision makers to guide the right development to the right places, whilst safeguarding our marine and coastal environment.
This collaboration has been a rewarding and successful venture enabling local people in the Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters area to have the opportunity to get involved in the complex process of marine spatial planning from the earliest stage. We would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the commitment and input of local people. Their valuable range of expertise and knowledge has been a vital asset during the process of developing this pilot Plan.
The experience gained through this process will go a long way to support the effective delivery of future regional marine planning in this area. We hope that this successful pilot will encourage local people to get involved in future marine planning partnerships, as their input will be key to future success.
Richard Lochhead MSP
Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment
Councillor Audrey Sinclair
Chair of the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Committee of The Highland Council
Councillor James Stockan
Chair of the Development and Infrastructure Committee of Orkney Islands Council