Planning at the edge: Integrating across the land sea divide

Sandy Kerr, Kate R Johnson, Jonathan Charles Side

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    53 Citations (Scopus)


    Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) is a relatively recent phenomenon. Land planning has evolved through decades of hard experience. This paper considers the origins of both marine and terrestrial planning highlighting fundamental differences. Development projects combining marine and terrestrial infrastructure, but operating in separate planning regimes, create the potential for conflict. With rising ambition to exploit marine resources there is a growing need for effective coordination between the terrestrial and marine planning systems. This paper considers marine renewable energy (wave and tide) developments which clearly represent and magnify the issues involved. Dense arrays of devices in close proximity to shore, combined marine/terrestrial operations, and coastal protected areas expose choices to high public scrutiny and introduce risk to developers. Particular reference is made to Scotland and marine renewable energy (MRE) development in the Pentland Firth and Orkney Waters (PFOW). The PFOW area is the world centre for trials of MRE devices and the subject of preparatory work and testing for MSP in all of Scottish waters. Scotland has the fourth largest marine area in Europe. This paper concludes that full integration is not achievable. The differences in governance, rights and resource use are too great. However, transboundary interactions are very significant and demand a high level of coordination and clear lines of accountability. Separation of accountability between central government responsibility for marine planning and local responsibility for terrestrial planning is not sustainable.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)118–125
    Number of pages8
    JournalMarine Policy
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014


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