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UK Marine Protected Area network statistics

JNCC calculates statistics for the whole of the UK Marine Protected Area (MPA) network to assess progress in MPA designation.

UK waters

UK waters area (km2)

Number of MPAs

MPA area (km2)

UK waters covered by MPAs (%)

All UK waters

885,457

355

218,183

25

Inshore

163,337

309

60,111

37

Offshore

722,120

73

158,073

22


Key information:

  • MPA designation types included: Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs), Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) with marine components, Special Protection Areas (SPAs) with marine components, and Nature Conservation MPAs.

  • Some MPAs cross the inshore/offshore boundary and contribute to both the inshore and offshore MPA counts. The total number of MPAs should be read from the 'All UK waters' row only, not summed from the inshore and offshore MPA counts.

  • Area calculations in Europe Albers Equal Area Conic projection (ESRI:102013) with standard parallels 50.2N and 61.2N, using transformations: ED_1950_To_WGS_1984_18 (EPSG:1311) and OSGB_1936_To_WGS_1984_Petroleum (EPSG:1314).

  • MPA boundaries were cut to mean high water mark (mean high water springs in Scotland) to exclude terrestrial areas, using OSMasterMap data for Eng/Wal/Scot and OSNI 2008 1:50,000 for Northern Ireland.

  • Area/percentage figures refer only to the whole of MPAs – they are not refined to management zones within MPAs.

  • English inshore waters contain 154 MPAs covering 49% of this region (25,102 km2). English offshore waters contain 40 MPAs covering 37% of this region (66,504 km2). Altogether, there are 175 MPAs covering 40% of English inshore and offshore waters combined (91,606 km2).

 

Last updated: June 2019

Published: .

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