JNCC’s advice on offshore Marine Conservation Zones 2015-2018

JNCC’s advice on offshore Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) considered for designation in 2018 as part of Tranche Three is available to download in the reports download box below.

Defra launched a six week consultation on the 8th June 2018 on the Third Tranche of Marine Conservation Zones which will close on Friday 20th July 2018. Further information is available on the Defra website here. A shapefile of those sites being consulted upon is available to download from the Natural England website here.

 

JNCC’s Tranche Three Pre-Consultation Advice (2016/2017)

In 2016 and 2017, JNCC provided advice to Defra on how offshore site options could help fill the remaining gaps in the existing network of MPAs around England and offshore waters of Northern Ireland (reports available below). This comprised of advice on those remaining offshore recommended MCZs (rMCZs) from the Regional MCZ Projects, alongside advice on new offshore site options identified by JNCC as necessary to complete the network. Furthermore, Defra announced it may also consider MCZs proposed by third-parties for highly mobile species (marine mammals, birds and fish) and so additional advice has been provided on those that were submitted for consideration by third-parties. In total, JNCC provided advice on 22 potential site options for Tranche Three. This included:

  • 13 offshore rMCZs;
  • one possible MCZ proposed by Northern Irish Fishermen;
  • advice on further features for possible designation in three existing offshore MCZs; 
  • four new site options; and
  • one third party highly mobile species proposal.

 

The following advice documents are available to downloaded from the document download box at the bottom of this page:

  1. Overview of JNCC’s scientific advice on possible offshore Marine Conservation Zones around England considered for consultation in 2018 – this provides an overall summary of all three elements of JNCC’s scientific advice;
  2. JNCC's Scientific advice on possible offshore Marine Conservation Zones considered for consultation in 2017, November 2016;
  3. JNCC’s scientific advice on possible offshore site options for consideration as Marine Conservation Zones to contribute to the MPA network, February 2017. Note: This document also contains JNCC and Natural England’s advice; Overview of the contribution to the MPA network of inshore and offshore site options being considered as potential MCZs, February 2017 (see Annex 3);

JNCC and Natural England’s scientific advice on proposed MCZs for highly mobile species, February 2017 is published on the Natural England website.

Natural England’s advice on possible inshore Marine Conservation Zones considered for consultation can be found here.

 

 

Assessing progress towards an ecologically coherent network of MPAs in Secretary of State Waters

In 2014 Defra commissioned JNCC to undertake a piece of work on ‘Assessing progress towards an ecologically coherent network of MPAs in Secretary of State Waters’. The analysis considered the progress of the Marine Protected Area network and those remaining MCZ site options that would fill any remaining gaps in the existing MPA network around England and offshore waters of Wales & Northern Ireland.


Following on from the aforementioned assessment, JNCC were asked to undertake a further piece of work in 2016 to review what is protected within the existing MPA network and then consider the potential contribution of other site options for a third tranche of MCZ designations. Two papers have been published; one describing the methodology and the other the results. All of these network assessment papers can be downloaded from the document download box at the bottom of this page.


As a result of the outcomes of the 2016 network analysis, JNCC and Natural England were asked by Defra to develop an approach to identifying potential new site options to complete Defra’s contribution to the MPA network. This approach is set out in the paper ‘Identifying potential site options to help complete the Marine Protected Area network in the waters around England’. JNCC held a two day workshop to discuss Tranche Three and the development of site options in offshore waters. Further information on this workshop and relevant materials can be accessed on the Tranche Three MCZ Workshop webpage. A supporting paper has also been produced which assesses the contribution of other area-based measures to address shortfalls in the MPA network in Secretary of State waters. Both papers can be downloaded from the document download box at the bottom of this page.