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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

885,430

358

318,254

36

Inshore

163,302

312

60,801

37

Offshore

722,128

73

257,453

36


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, Nature Conservation MPAs and national MPAs in Scotland.

  • 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 Projected Coordinate System: European Terrestrial Reference System 1989 Lambert Azimuthal Equal-Area (EPSG: 3035), using transformations: OSGB 1936 to ETRS89 (OSTN15 EPSG:7709) and ETRS89 to WGS 84 (1) (EPSG:1149).

  • 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 157 MPAs covering 50% of this region (25,788 km2). English offshore waters contain 40 MPAs covering 37% of this region (66,507 km2). Altogether, there are 178 MPAs covering 40% of English inshore and offshore waters combined (92,295 km2).

 

Last updated: November 2020

Categories:

About Marine Protected Areas

Published: .

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