Marine spatial planning and Good Environmental status: A perspective on spatial and temporal dimensions

Alison J. Gilbert, Karen Alexander, Rafael Sardá, Raminta Brazinskaite, Christian Fischer, Kira Gee, Mark Jessopp, Peter Kershaw, Hans J. Los, David March Morla, Cathal O'Mahony, Mia Pihlajamäki, Siân Rees, Riku Varjopuro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


The European Union Marine Strategy Framework Directive requires the Good Environmental Status of marine environments in Europe's regional seas; yet, maritime activities, including sources of marine degradation, are diversifying and intensifying in an increasingly globalized world. Marine spatial planning is emerging as a tool for rationalizing competing uses of the marine environment while guarding its quality. A directive guiding the development of such plans by European Union member states is currently being formulated. There is an undeniable need for marine spatial planning. However, we argue that considerable care must be taken with marine spatial planning, as the spatial and temporal scales of maritime activities and of Good Environmental Status may be mismatched. We identify four principles for careful and explicit consideration to align the requirements of the two directives and enable marine spatial planning to support the achievement of Good Environmental Status in Europe's regional seas.

Original languageEnglish
Article number64
JournalEcology and Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2015


  • Good Environmental Status
  • Marine spatial planning
  • Maritime spatial planning
  • Spatial scale temporal scale

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Marine spatial planning and Good Environmental status: A perspective on spatial and temporal dimensions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this