Maritime spatial planning
Commission proposes legislation on Maritime Spatial Planning and Integrated Costal Management
- Press release
- Questions & Answers
- Extracts from the Midday statements by Commissioner Maria Damanaki
- Proposal for a directive establishing a framework for maritime spatial planning and integrated coastal management (all available language versions)
- Impact assessment [3 MB] All available translations.
- Impact assessment summary [62 KB] All available translations.
Definition and scope
Maritime spatial planning is about planning when and where human activities take place at sea. It is is a transparent and comprehensive process based on stakeholder involvement. Its aim is to draw up plans which identify the most efficient and sustainable current and future use of maritime space.
Maritime Spatial Planning is complementary to Integrated coastal Management see Integrated coastal zone management (ICZM) (English only)
- Economic development: Maritime spatial planning will ensure the coherent development of the blue economy, facilitating synergies between maritime activities and reducing conflicts between competing sectors.
- Stable investment climate: Maritime spatial planning will accelerate investments in the blue economy by increasing the stability, transparency and predictability for investments in the offshore maritime economy. This could generate up to €600 million by 2020 in wind-farm and aqua-farm activities alone.
- Cross border cooperation: Maritime spatial planning will facilitate cross-border cooperation between Member States on cables, pipelines, shipping lanes, wind installations, etc. This will help the development of renewable energy sources and grids, investments in oil and gas, and the efficient establishment of Marine Protected Areas.
- Coordination: Maritime spatial planning will improve coordination of maritime administrations through the use of a single instrument to balance the development of a diversity of maritime activities. This will not only simplify the work of public administrations but also cut costs.
- Environmental protection: Maritime spatial planning will reduce pressures on the environment by identifying earlier the impact on the environment and opportunities for multiple use of space. These can then be translated more efficiently into spatial management.
A common Framework for Maritime Spatial Planning in Europe
Maritime spatial planning should be carried out by all EU countries. Member States should decide themselves what and where to plan. However, planning in shared seas should be compatible, to avoid conflicts and support cross-border cooperation and investment. A common framework based on minimum requirements agreed at EU level will ensure that national, regional and local maritime spatial plans are coherent and will facilitate cross-border cooperation.
- Stakeholder consultation on MSP and ICZM [332 KB] All available translations. (Summary results)
- Commission communication on maritime spatial planning in the EU
- Roadmap for maritime spatial planning in the EU
- MASPNOSE - Preparatory Action on Maritime Spatial Planning in the North Sea (2010-2012)
- Plan Bothnia - Preparatory Action on Maritime Spatial Planning in the Baltic Sea (2010 - 2012)
- BaltSeaPlan - Baltic Sea Region Programme project "Introducing Maritime Spatial Planning in the Baltic Sea" (2009 – 2012)
- TPEA, Transboundary Planning in the European Atlantic – Project on Maritime Spatial Planning in the Atlantic, including the Celtic Sea and Bay of Biscay (2012- 2014)
- Maritime spatial planning section (background info, working documents, events)
Magazine: Fisheries and aquaculture in Europe no. 60
2013: the year of the fisheries reform, find out the latest about the negotiation process (trilogues) and read about Maritime spatial planning, Regional strategy for the Adriatic, TACs 2013 and the national plans on Aquaculture
Commission launches initiative on sustainable management of marine and coastal areas
Today the Commission launched a proposal to improve the planning of maritime activities at sea and the management of coastal areas. The proposal – which takes the form of a draft directive – aims to establish a common European framework for maritime spatial planning and integrated coastal management in EU Member States, with a view to ensuring that the growth of maritime and coastal activities and the use of resources at sea and on coasts remain sustainable.
Questions and Answers on proposed Directive on Maritime Spatial Planning and Integrated Coastal Management
Why is the Commission proposing a Framework Directive on Maritime Spatial Planning and Integrated Coastal Management?