Sectoral marine plan: islands communities impact assessment

Islands communities impact assessment for the sectoral marine plan for offshore wind energy.

Summary of aims and expected outcomes of the Plan:

The Plan provides the spatial framework to enable the Crown Estate Scotland seabed leasing round ('ScotWind') for commercial-scale offshore wind energy.

The Plan focusses on offshore wind energy development out to 2050 and aims to identify the most sustainable areas for future commercial-scale offshore wind energy development in Scottish waters.

The Plan constitutes a strategic framework, which will be implemented by subsequent leasing, licensing and consenting decisions. It is not possible to predict the level of future development within the identified Plan Options, which is reliant on the leasing, licensing and consenting regimes, as well as commercial and technological considerations, which are outwith the control of the Plan.

The draft Plan and Sustainability Appraisal reports were published to allow consultation on the following:

  • The draft Sustainability Appraisal ("SA") (comprising Strategic Environmental Assessment ("SEA"), Socio Economic Impact Assessment ("SEIA") and Habitats Regulations Appraisal ("HRA")) reports which assess the potential impacts of the draft Plan Options;
  • Draft Regional Locational Guidance ("RLG"), to support further spatial planning and inform project-level site selection and assessment;
  • The 17 identified draft Plan Options; and
  • Plan policies regarding future development of offshore wind energy within the draft Plan Options identified.

Public consultation on the draft Plan and Sustainability Appraisal took place between 18 December 2019 and 25 March 2020. A total of 443 responses were received and these are summarised in the Consultation Analysis Report.[1] Full copies of consultation responses (where permission has been granted to publish these) are available online.[2]

The outputs of the consultation exercise have been used to inform the development of the final Plan and the selection of final Plan Options. Two draft Plan Options were not chosen to progress as final Plan Options and amendments were made to the boundaries of 7 draft Plan Options to address comments raised during the consultation process. A summary of the changes between the draft and final Plans is provided in the Post Adoption Statement.[3]



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