Proposal to designate a Deep Sea Marine Reserve in Scottish waters

Closes 31 Dec 2019

Opened 27 Sep 2019


The Scottish Government's vision for the marine environment is of clean, healthy, safe, productive and diverse seas; managed to meet the long term needs of nature and people.

We would welcome your views on the creation of a Deep Sea Marine Reserve to the West of Scotland, as part of the Scottish Marine Protected Area (MPA) network. This consultation fulfils a Programme for Governemnt commitment.

If taken forward to designation, the site would be underpinned by the powers in the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. This means in legal terms it would have the same status as the other existing Marine Protected Areas in offshore waters.
The West of Scotland area, if designated, would help meet our international commitments to protect the marine environment in the North-East Atlantic, as required under the OSPAR Convention. Ten of the identified habitats and species in the West of Scotland area are on the OSPAR threatened and/or declining list.
Click here to see a visualisation of the West of Scotland area.
To view the proposed West of Scotland Area in relation to the rest of Scotland's MPA network, please visit Marine Scotland Maps.

Why We Are Consulting

This consultation seeks your views on the case for designating the West of Scotland as a Deep Sea Marine Reserve; in particular:

  1. The scientific case for the designation of the West of Scotland area
  2. The conservation objectives and potential management advice 
  3. The potential environmental and socio-economic impacts of West of Scotland area

This page serves as notice under Section 119 of the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009.

Read the consultation paper.

Give us your views


  • Environment and Climate Change
  • Marine and Fisheries