Implementation Lead(s): Scottish Government
Locations: Coast and Islands; Offshore
Environmental Mitigation: Strategic Environmental Assessment and Strategic Habitats Regulation Appraisal of the National Marine Plan and Sectoral Marine Plans are informing finalisation of the plans. Environmental Impact Assessment and Habitats Regulation Assessment will be completed as required for individual projects.
Ongoing Activity and Milestones:
The National Marine Plan was adopted and published in March 2015.
Draft Sectoral Marine Plans for Offshore Wind, Wave and Tidal Energy in Scottish Waters have been developed and published in 2013. The draft plans contained Plan Option areas for commercial scale offshore wind and marine renewable energy. These areas are considered the preferred strategic locations for the sustainable development of offshore wind and marine renewables, and were included in the National Marine Plan.
Scottish Ministers have, over the course of the last 4 years, given consent to a number of commercial scale and demonstration scale projects in Scottish Waters.
The draft Sectoral Marine Plans have yet to be finalised due to the challenges faced by the offshore renewable energy industry as a result of electricity market reform and the shift from the Renewables Obligations Certificates to Contract for Difference subsidy regimes.
The development of technology such as floating wind offers scope to develop in deeper waters and contribute to offshore wind energy supply. This provides the opportunity for Scottish Ministers to now review the Plan Options for conventional technologies in the 2013 Draft Plan for Offshore Wind Energy and include those for deep water wind technologies. These will form the basis of a new Plan for Offshore Wind Energy. This will include work to consider whether there is a requirement for a strategic marine grid solution.