Marine plan area co-existence assessment

Creating a means to assess potential interactions between human activities and the marine environment

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) was looking for a means to inform the strategic prioritisation of sectors/activities within specific areas, for example, identifying the best sites for specific activities considering displacement/disruption of and/or benefits to existing or potential future activities.

ABPmer was contracted to scope a co-existence assessment tool that could be applied to all sectors/activities identified in the Marine Policy Statement.

We developed a framework that identified and assessed potential interactions between different human activities or between human activities and the marine environment and then comparing 'co-existence' and 'no co-existence' options within a cost benefit framework.

Such a framework helps to identify the potentially significant impacts associated with 'co-existence' and 'no co-existence' options. This serves both to inform policy choices but also helps to identify where mitigation measures might be targeted to deliver greatest benefit.

The framework can also be used to inform project-level marine licensing decisions and in the consideration of possible management measures within Marine Protected Areas.

The related report is available at GOV.UK.