Summary of Recent Marine Planning Projects
The voluntary Firth of Clyde Marine Spatial Plan (2010) by the Firth of Clyde Forum included an Action Plan with a prioritised list of projects for the Forum to engage with or undertake. Below is a list of projects which were led by the project team. Other aspects of the Action Plan have been taken forward by other means e.g. the MPA process took forward ENV 2/3/4 whilst the Scottish Marine Tourism Strategy has superseded R&T3. The Clyde Marine Planning Partnership remains supportive and engaged with these priority areas whether they are leading the work or as part of a partnership approach.
Clyde 2020 - A Vision for the Firth of Clyde Ecosystem
Background to Clyde 2020
The Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment addressed the Clyde 2020 summit in April 2014. The event brought together a wide range of stakeholders to define a vision and objectives for the project. The papers from the summit are available below.
Clyde 2020 Vision
The Firth of Clyde is a healthy and thriving marine ecosystem that is capable of adapting and mitigating for the challenges of climate change and supports sustainable fishing, tourism, leisure and other sustainable developments while offering protection to the most fragile species and habitats. This will enhance the quality of life for local communities and contribute to a diverse and sustainable economy for the West of Scotland.
Following the summit, the Clyde 2020 Steering Group was established and quickly identified the need for detailed scientific advice on some of the issues raised during the summit. The Terms of Reference and advert for the Research Advisory Group (RAG) are listed below.
Members of the RAG were appointed in October 2015, and represent a range of fisheries and environmental experts. The RAG will advise the Clyde 2020 Steering Group on technical and scientific issues. RAG members are individuals and do not represent organisations. The CMPP would like to extend their thanks to the group for their time which is donated free of charge.
The Clyde 2020 project is a sub-group of the CMPP. It is hoped that Clyde 2020 outputs will help to shape the Clyde Marine Plan and have a significant impact on the development of relevant policies. The significant expertise of members of Clyde 2020 will be utilised in Plan development and the Steering Group represents an important opportunity for these members who represent important interests in the Clyde to be regularly consulted and to play a significant role during Plan development.
Clyde 2020 recommendations will go to the CMPP for final endorsement and action and decision making (if needed). Clyde 2020 meetings are reported to the CMPP via circulation of minutes and a project update.
Most Recent Documents:
- RAG Advice to 2020 Steering Group – 9 September 2016
- Clyde 2020 Research Advisory Group Membership
- CMPP and Clyde 2020 memberships
Action Plan Workshop Outputs: April 2015
Clyde 2020 Summit Outputs
- Report of the Clyde 2020 Summit – April 2014
- Annex A – Vision workshops
- Annex B – Research Workshops Flip Chart Notes
- Annex C – Practical measures workshop
- Annex D – Status of which fish in the Firth of Clyde
- Annex E – The planning context (Presentation)
- Inventory of Clyde related management measures
- Clyde related published literature
- Revised Terms of Reference – Clyde 2020 Steering Group March 2017
- Research Advisory Group advert
- Clyde Ecosystem Review
- RAG ToR Clyde 2020 final
Impacts of Sea Level Rise and Storm Surges in the Firth of Clyde
This report provides an evidence base of the known extent and associated risks of sea-level rise and storm surges due to climate change in the Clyde Marine Region for habitats, human communities and infrastructure. It provides additional information, alongside the work of SEPA, the Local Authorities and the Scottish Government, to inform development planning decisions at the coast in the Region. Funding was provided by Scottish Natural Heritage, Peel Ports Clydeport, Clydeplan, Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park Authority and the Firth of Clyde Forum.
Download the final project report here (47MB) – Impacts of sea-level rise and storm surges due to climate change in the Firth of Clyde.
In addition, the mapped annex outputs (122MB) are also available to download here – Impacts of sea-level rise and storm surges due to climate change in the Firth of Clyde – Annex 7 – High res version – 122MB.
The report can also be accessed from the SNH website here.
Scottish Marine Recreation and Tourism Survey
The Scottish Marine Recreation and Tourism Survey (SMRTS) was designed to gather information for 23 different recreation and tourism activities undertaken at sea or around the Scottish coastline. It was a web-based survey with interactive mapping tools which gathered spatial information on the activities people had undertaken during the previous twelve months and asked detailed questions about their one or two most important activities. A survey of businesses was also undertaken. The final report was published in April 2016 and includes separate appendices giving detailed analysis across the 23 activities.
- Literature review and recommendations
- Final Report
- Appendix 1 – General Marine and Coastal Recreation
- Appendix 2 – General Marine and Coastal Tourism
- Appendix 3 – Visits to historic sites and attractions
- Appendix 4 – Walking at the coast
- Appendix 5 – Long distance swimming in the sea
- Appendix 6 – Bird and wildlife watching
- Appendix 7 – Coastal climbing, bouldering and coasteering
- Appendix 8 – Land yachting, power kiting, and kite buggying at the coast
- Appendix 9 – SCUBA diving in the sea
- Appendix 10 – Surfing, surf kayaking or paddleboarding in the sea
- Appendix 11 – Windsurfing and kite surfing at the coast
- Appendix 12 – Canoeing or kayaking in the sea
- Appendix 13 – Rowing and sculling in the sea
- Appendix 14 – Water skiing and wakeboarding in the sea
- Appendix 15 – Dinghy racing at sea
- Appendix 16 – Yacht racing at sea
- Appendix 17 – Sailing cruising including dinghy cruising at sea
- Appendix 18 – Motor cruising at sea
- Appendix 19 – Power boating at sea
- Appendix 20 – Personal watercraft (jet skis) at sea
- Appendix 21 – Sea angling from the shore
- Appendix 22 – Sea angling from a private or chartered boat
- Appendix 23 – Other – wildfowling
- Appendix 24 – Activity Survey Questionnaire
- Appendix 25 – Business questionnaire
- Appendix 26 – Stakeholders for survey launch & publicity
- Appendix 27 – Scottish Marine Regions
Seascape/Landscape assessment of the Firth of Clyde
The report below provides a strategic assessment of the coastal landscape and seascape of the Firth of Clyde. The study area stretches from the Mull of Kintyre in Argyll to Finnarts Bay on the south Ayrshire coast. It includes the islands of Arran, Bute and the Cumbraes and stretches north into the Argyll sea lochs of Loch Fyne, Loch Long, Loch Goil and Gareloch as well as east to Clydebank.
This project provides an understanding of what is special about the landscape of the Firth of Clyde and the experience of this diverse seascape. It provides a landscape context for decision makers, and suggests opportunities for landscape change.
The project had the following strategic aims:
- to establish a baseline of the key characteristics/attributes of coastal character at the strategic (regional) and local level
- assess the sensitivity of the coastal character to different development and/or activities (both on and offshore)
- identification of coastal areas with isolated/remote qualities
- identification of coastal areas with visual sensitivities
The report is broken down into the following sections (available as separate pdfs):
Assessments of Seascape Areas:
- Section 3: Inner Firth of Clyde
- Section 4: Gareloch
- Section 5: Loch Long
- Section 6: Loch Goil
- Section 7: Upper Firth of Clyde and the Cumbraes
- Section 8: Lower Firth of Clyde (East)
- Section 9: Outer Firth of Clyde
- Section 10: Lower Firth of Clyde (West)
- Section 11: Loch Fyne
- Section 12: Sound of Bute
- Section 13: Kyles of Bute
- Section 14: Loch Striven
- Section 15: Rothesay Sound
- Section 16: Appendix 1: Extract from the Project Brief
- Section 17: References and Glossary
GIS mapping information:
- GIS Mapping Info – 1 Full Final Coastal Character Areas
- GIS Mapping Info – 2 Coastal character influenced by derelict and semi-derelict land
- GIS Mapping Info – 3 Coastal character influenced by designated landscape and policies
- GIS Mapping Info – 4 Coastal character influenced by experience of isolated coast
- GIS Mapping Info – 5 Coastal character influenced by remote coast
- GIS Mapping Info – 6 Coastal character influenced by secluded coast
Invasive Non-Native Species
Non-native species become ‘invasive’ when they thrive aggressively and threaten native species, ecosystems, and natural features (such as riverbanks) or interfere with manmade structures and business interests such as aquaculture or fisheries. To date this aggressive behaviour has not been seen in the Firth of Clyde, but in other parts of the UK native species have been smothered and aquaculture installations and water intakes clogged.
The Action Plan of the Firth of Clyde Marine Spatial Plan (2010) identified the need for a guiding framework for marine non-native species in (ENV5). The Firth of Clyde Forum published a Biosecurity Plan in 2011 with the focus on prevention and monitoring of INNS. During 2012 the Forum produced and distributed fact sheets and identification guides to raise awareness among users of the Clyde and ran a training programme to help develop a network of industry monitors who will keep an eye out for invasive species.
The Clyde Biosecurity Plan identifies 11 invasive non-native species (INNS) in or on their way to the Firth of Clyde, some of which are pictured here. They can be transported through various ‘pathways’ including fouling of hulls or trapped water in boats and equipment, ballast water, relocated structures, floating debris or via natural dispersal. Eradicating marine INNS is very difficult and preventing introduction is a priority – in other words biosecurity planning. With the development of the Wildlife and Nature Environment (Scotland) Act the Forum felt there was a need for greater guidance about biosecurity planning and we commissioned SAMS to produce a literature review and a guidance document which has now been adopted as best practice by all UK administrations.
The UK and Scottish governments have responsibilities under the European Water Framework Directive and Marine Strategy Framework Directive to ensure Good Environmental Status of our marine waters including a target that non-native species are not having any adverse impacts on the native ecosystem.
If you are going to be out on the water follow the Check, Clean, Dry guidelines. Download a copy of the Firth of Clyde Biosecurity Plan below or visit the GB Non-Native Species Secretariat at http://www.nonnativespecies.org/.
The CMPP is represented on the Marine Pathways Project. For more information please see this website.
- Guidance on Marine Biosecurity Planning
- SNH Commissioned Report No. 748 – Marine Biosecurity Planning Identification of best practise: A review
- Firth of Clyde Biosecurity Plan 2012-2014
- INNS Identification guide – dangle book
- SAMS INNS presentation 2012
Firth of Clyde Forum Invasive species meeting 2011
Shore side access and infrastructure audit
Following the Firth of Clyde Marine Spatial Plan (2010) Action Plan (ENV11) The Firth of Clyde Forum published a report as the first step in developing a marine litter strategy for the Firth of Clyde – Step 1: Defining the status quo. This provides a background to litter cleaning activities currently taking place in the Firth of Clyde and uses data from the Marine Conservation Society to show the types and volume of litter found. In 2012 the Forum also worked with Local Authorities, the Marine Conservation Society, Keep Scotland Beautiful and GRAB to develop Coastal Litter Management Guidelines for Duty Bodies.
The Firth of Clyde Forum recommends that people wishing to undertake a beach clean sign up for the Marine Conservation Society’s Beachwatch scheme. The MCS provide guidelines on beach cleaning including health and safety precautions and any event organised according to MCS guidelines is covered by MCS public liability insurance (3rd party insurance). By filling out the Beachwatch Survey Summary you will be contributing to a long running database of volumes and sources of litter. Gathering knowledge on this can contribute to the development of marine litter strategies which target litter at source.
Importance of Strandlines
Strandlines are created by the accumulation of organic matter around the high water mark and often consist of seaweed, carrion and other organic material. Whilst some may feel they spoil a beach, they are in fact are an extremely important part of a healthy beach ecosystem, providing food for a wide variety of creatures and stability for the sand, and linking marine and terrestrial ecosystems. The functions of the strandline are as follows:
- They provide habitat and food for small crustaceans such as sand-hoppers which recycle nutrients from dead and decaying material back into the beach ecosystem
- Small crustaceans and flies from the strandline act as a direct food source for beetles, spiders, fish and birds, both seabirds and terrestrial species;
- They can be the first stage in the formation of coastal sand dunes which are important for coastal protection against erosion and flooding.
Unfortunately strandlines are often cluttered with marine litter, also brought in with the wind and tide. For the reasons indicated above, whenever beach cleaning has to occur, it is therefore recommended that hand-picking of rubbish is carried out so as to preserve the important role undertaken by the strandline in the beach ecosystem.
The websites listed below provide information about marine litter and beach/shoreline cleaning.
- GRAB Trust (Argyll & Bute)
- Marine Conservation Society
- Keep Scotland Beautiful
- Fishing for Litter
- Marine Scotland
- The Great Nurdle Hunt