Significant progress has been made towards implementing Marine Protected Area (MPA) networks in UK waters, with Scotland successfully designating 30 new Scottish MPA sites in July 2014. This paper reviews the Scottish MPA process up to the point of implementation, summarising the process that led to the designation of the MPA network. In particular, this paper investigates the extent to which the process i) effectively engaged stakeholders; ii) used ecological guiding principles; and iii) considered climate change. In doing so, this paper highlights several key issues if the Scottish MPA network is to move beyond an administrative exercise and is able to make a meaningful contribution to marine biodiversity protection for Europe: i) fully adopt best practice ecological principles ii) ensure effective protection and iii) explicitly consider climate change in the management, monitoring and future iterations of the network.
Hopkins, C. R., Bailey, D. M., Hopkins, C., Bailey, D., & Potts, T. (2016). Scotland's Marine Protected Area network: Reviewing progress towards achieving commitments for marine conservation. Marine Policy, 71, 44-53. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpol.2016.05.015