Marine Scotland blog

News from Marine Scotland

May 27, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

New guidance supports tidal sector and helps protect wildlife

Guidance cover

Renewable energy development in the sea needs to be sustainable and undertaken in the light of the best current understanding of environmental impacts.  The potential for marine wildlife to collide with underwater turbines is an important element of risk assessments for tidal stream turbine projects, and new Guidance has just been published by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) for people responsible for assessing this risk to wildlife.

The Guidance presents and discusses three models which can be used to estimate the number of animals likely to collide with tidal turbine arrays, and detailed spreadsheets for performing the calculations are available, together with comprehensive instructions. The aim is to help encourage standardised approaches to collision risk assessment for tidal projects for developers, consultants and regulatory bodies.

Further Information

May 25, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

Scottish Natural Heritage – May 2016 e-newsletter

The latest edition of the Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) e-newsletter is now available online.

This edition has articles on Pentland Action, the 10th anniversary for Glasgow Green Network and exciting opportunities for students and graduates who will be based across various National Nature Reserves managed by SNH.

Further Information

May 23, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

SEWeb – A vote for LIFE

Since 2005, the Best LIFE Environment projects have been recognised at an annual award ceremony and for the second year running, you have the chance to choose your favourite project!

A total of 25 projects have been shortlisted for the LIFE Citizens’ Award – 24 Best LIFE Environment projects, plus one LIFE Information & Communication project with an environmental theme – and these have been meticulously selected by environmental experts according to rigorous criteria.

The one with the most votes will be presented with the LIFE Citizens’ Award for environment at EU Green Week in Brussels on 31 May 2016 and this is where we need your help! Vote for the SEWeb project!

For the past five years, the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) has worked with key partners, including Marine Scotland, to create a valuable source of information and data that informs, educates and helps people to understand their environment. The project has been recognised as an example of best practice in sharing open data and partnership working, and changed the way people access and use environmental data.

The public voting for the LIFE Citizens’ Award is now open to everyone!

Voting will end on Monday 30/05/2016.

More Information

May 20, 2016
by Lyndsay Cruickshank
0 comments

Alba na Mara: Survey 0916A Programme

Duration: 19 May – 07 June 2016

Fishing Gear: Scallop dredges

Project: 20 days, SU02NS

Objectives:

  1. To carry out a survey of scallop stocks on the East Coast;
  2. To age, measure and assess shell damage on all scallops caught;
  3. To collect information on by-catch of other commercial fish and shellfish species;
  4. To identify and quantify numbers of starfish species in all dredge tows;
  5. To collect flesh samples for genetic/parasite and toxin analysis back at the laboratory;
  6. Arrange collection of live scallops for return to the lab during the survey; and
  7. Collect clapper shells during survey which will be aged, measured and damage assessed.

Procedure:

The survey will depart from Fraserburgh on 19 May.  After drills, the vessel will head for the first station, the location of which will be decided by the Scientist-in-Charge, in conjunction with the captain.

Scallop dredge hauls will be made at sites used on previous surveys as shown Figure 1.  Hauls will be of 30 minutes duration.  From each haul all of the scallops will be measured to the half centimetre below and aged.  Numbers and size distribution of commercial fish and shellfish species will be recorded along with scallop shell damage and starfish numbers and species.  Tissue samples will also be collected from selected sites and frozen for toxin analysis back at the laboratory.  Scallops will be collected for genetic analysis and some will also be returned live back to the lab for parasite analysis.

Data will be collected on the number of “clappers”.  These are empty scallop shells with both valves still attached at the hinge.  The ratio of “clappers” to live scallops can be used as an estimate of recent mortality.

The survey will end in Fraserburgh on 7 June where all equipment and staff will then return to the laboratory.

********************************************

Further Information:

Figure 1

Figure 1 Alba na Mara survey 0916A

May 19, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

European Maritime Day: Part Two – the SIMCelt project

The 18th and 19th May celebrate European Maritime Day (EMD) - the annual meeting point for Europe’s maritime community to network, discuss, and agree joint action on work connected to the marine environment.

EMD 2016 has been organised in cooperation with the City of Turku and the Finnish government and focuses on the theme of “Investing in competitive blue growth – smart and sustainable solutions”.  More specifically it will focus on identifying and highlighting the practical steps needed to drive blue growth investments, as well as innovation and change in the blue economy.

In celebration of this, over the next two days we’re going to blog about two new projects that Marine Scotland has been involved with – the NorthSEE project and SIMCelt project.

Scotland’s National Marine Plan, published in March 2015, provides a single framework for sustainable management of Scotland’s seas. It has been designed to support the development of future regional marine plans and also ensures that the Scottish Government meets EU Regulations around planning, especially where sea boundaries are shared. For the first time, sea areas who are managed by different organisations – including Marine Scotland – will participate in two European Commission funded projects in the Celtic and North Sea. As partners on both projects, the Scottish Government will be sharing resources, joining up activities where possible and sharing lessons learned.

The SIMCelt Project

The Supporting Implementation of Maritime Spatial Planning in the Celtic Seas (SIMCelt) project has secured funding from the European Commission to run a Marine Spatial Planning project in the Celtic Seas.

Over the next two years in Scotland, the project will support regional marine planning by testing new stakeholder engagement tools in the Clyde Marine Region and it will explore the challenges of cross-border spatial planning in the Solway Marine Region. The project brings together a number of partners – research organisations, marine planning authorities and marine management bodies – who have extensive experience with regard to marine planning, policy and management.

SIMCelt Partners:

  • University College Cork – National University of Ireland (Lead Partner)
  • Scottish Government
  • Service Hydrographique et Océanographique de la Marine (France)
  • The University of Liverpool (UK)
  • Agence des Aires Marines Protégées (France)
  • Marine Institute (Ireland)
  • Department of the Environment (Northern Ireland)

_______

Written by

Andronikos Kafas  and Lynsay Ross, Marine Scotland.

Further Information

May 18, 2016
by Ruth Allen
1 Comment

European Maritime Day: Part One – the NorthSEE project

European Maritime Day logo

The 18th and 19th May celebrate European Maritime Day (EMD) - the annual meeting point for Europe’s maritime community to network, discuss, and agree joint action on work connected to the marine environment.

EMD 2016 has been organised in cooperation with the City of Turku and the Finnish government and focuses on the theme of “Investing in competitive blue growth – smart and sustainable solutions”.  More specifically it will focus on identifying and highlighting the practical steps needed to drive blue growth investments, as well as innovation and change in the blue economy.

In celebration of this, over the next two days we’re going to blog about two new projects that Marine Scotland has been involved with – the NorthSEE project and SIMCelt project.

Scotland’s National Marine Plan, published in March 2015, provides a single framework for sustainable management of Scotland’s seas. It has been designed to support the development of future regional marine plans and also ensures that the Scottish Government meets EU Regulations around planning, especially where sea boundaries are shared. For the first time, sea areas who are managed by different organisations – including Marine Scotland – will participate in two European Commission funded projects in the Celtic and North Sea. As partners on both projects, the Scottish Government will be sharing resources, joining up activities where possible and sharing lessons learned.

The NorthSEE Project

The North Sea Perspective on Shipping, Energy and Environment Aspects in Marine Spatial Planning (NorthSEE) project has secured funding for a three-year programme of work through the European Territorial Cooperation fund.

The project will look to increase the effectiveness of marine spatial planning by co-ordinating all of the Marine Spatial Plans in the North Sea Region. The project aims to find solutions and approaches to trans-boundary planning by working together to identify synergies and mis-matches of planning processes.

The NorthSEE Partners are a combination of National and Regional Public Authorities as well as Higher Education and Research facilities:

National Public Authority project partners:

  • German Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency (Lead Partner)
  • Scottish Government
  • Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment
  • Belgian Ministry of Environment
  • Belgian Federal Government Service for Mobility
  • Director General Maritime Transport)
  • Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment
  • Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management
  • Danish Ministry of Environment (Aalborg University)

Higher education and research project partners:

  • Aalborg University (Denmark)
  • Carl von Ossietzky
  • University of Oldenburg (Germany)
  • World Maritime University (Sweden)
  •  NHTV University of Applied Sciences (Netherlands)
  • Institute of Marine Research (Norway)
  • Norwegian Environment Agency (Norway)
  • University of Aberdeen (Scotland)

Regional public authority project partners:

  • Province of Noord-Holland (Netherlands)

_______

Written by

Andronikos Kafas  and Lynsay Ross, Marine Scotland.

Further Information

 

May 17, 2016
by Lyndsay Cruickshank
0 comments

MV Clupea changes course from Research to Rescue

Clupea taken by CDavies. Crown copyright.Marine Scotland’s former research vessel Clupea has recently found a new vocation turning from research cruises to rescue missions.  Now known as Sea-Watch 2, the MV Clupea underwent some major refit works in Hamburg, including the addition of a medical ward, to allow it to operate all year round and under bad weather conditions when, unfortunately, many maritime accidents happen.

Financed by crowd-funding donations,  the non-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) Sea Watch was able to buy the ship for their search and rescue (SAR) missions, leaving only weeks ago to take up rescue operations off the Libyan coast.

MV Clupea was built in 1968 as a dedicated fishery research ship by order of the UK government; then later sold to private operators in 2008.

We are delighted that a vessel we had commissioned has gone on to do such noble work – all the best Sea-Watch 2, you have made us very proud.

Further Information:

May 16, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

STEM in Scotland – what do you think?

Equate Scotland logo

This year, Equate Scotland is celebrating 10 years of increasing the number of women in science, engineering, technology and the built environment.  Significant progress has been made and issue is a national priority, but there is still a long way to go make equality in STEM a reality.

Marine Scotland Science is a huge supporter of STEM through its numerous outreach activities and also with its work with the Nuffield Foundation and Glasgow School of Art. Interestingly we have, in the most recent years, been working with more and more young ladies - Deborah McGill, Cora Moffat, Katie Forbes, Mairi BellErin Warner and, most recently, Skye Arnott.

But this is where you come in – what do you think the next 10 years of STEM in Scotland should look like? Equate Scotland want to hear from girls, women, educators, policy makers and employers.

Please help by filling in this short survey to share what you think should happen across schools, colleges, universities and within the industry to increase the number of women in STEM. Share your big idea and your vision for the future of STEM in Scotland.

All your responses will help shape Equate Scotland’s anniversary publication later this year.

Thank you.

More Information

May 13, 2016
by Ruth Allen
0 comments

Scottish Marine Tourism and Recreation webcast

According to the Scottish Marine Recreation and Tourism Survey report published in March this year, marine recreation and tourism expenditure in Scotland is estimated to amount to £3.7 billion per year.

About the survey:

  • More than 2,500 responses, many more than any other similar survey in Scotland;
  • Covers 23 different recreation and tourism activities; and,
  • Maps and data give important detail for marine planners.

To find out more about this work and how it could be useful to you, there will be a free webcast - join the webcast on Thursday 19th May 2016 between 12.30pm to 1.15pm.

 To book your place, visit the registration website and enter your details. You will be sent a link and password closer to the date of the webcast.

Further Information