Consultation letter - Defra Consultation Hub

[email protected]
30th January 2015
Dear Consultee,
Consultation on Marine Strategy Framework Directive: Proposals for UK
Programme of Measures
Defra, the Northern Ireland executive, the Scottish government and the Welsh government
are seeking views on the UK’s proposed programme of measures to maintain or achieve
Good Environmental Status (GES) in their seas by 2020.
The consultation covers proposals for programme of measures for each of the 11 Marine
Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) descriptors. These relate to biological diversity,
non-indigenous species, commercially exploited fish and shellfish, food webs, humaninduced eutrophication, sea floor integrity, hydrographical conditions, contaminants,
contaminants in fish and other seafood, marine litter and introduction of energy (including
underwater noise).
The consultation does not cover the initial assessment of the state of the UK’s seas and
GES characteristics, targets and indicators. These were covered in a previous
consultation and the UK’s approach is documented in Marine Strategy Part One published
December 2012 (
The consultation also does not cover the UK’s marine monitoring programme. This was
completed in July 2014 with the publication of the Marine Strategy Part Two
The aims of the directive are consistent with the UK government and devolved
administrations’ vision of “clean, healthy, safe, productive and biologically diverse oceans
and seas” as set out in the UK Marine Policy Statement. In line with the UK Marine Policy
Statement, the UK government and devolved administrations have already put in place
and committed to taking many measures that will improve the state of the UK’s marine
environment as part of ensuring sustainable development, most notably through the UK
Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009, the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 and the Marine Act
(Northern Ireland) 2013. Equally, measures taken as a result of existing EU legislation,
such as the Water Framework Directive (WFD), the Birds and Habitats Directives and the
newly reformed Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), also contribute to improving the state of
the UK’s marine and coastal environments. The UK has adopted a proportionate approach
that avoids gold-plating, but which is considered sufficient to meet the requirements of the
The consultation document can be found on Defra’s website:
You can find more information on the MSFD at:
We welcome your views and comments on the proposals. Please send responses by 24th
April 2015 to [email protected]
Marine Strategy Framework Directive Implementation Team
Area 8B Nobel House
17 Smith Square
Alternatively, you can respond online via the consultation page that can be found at
If you wish to obtain a hard copy of this consultation please use the contact details above.
Related consultations
Given the strong links between implementation of MSFD and other policy areas, interested
parties may also wish to respond to the following related consultations:
- the implementation of the demersal landing obligation
- the second tranche of Marine Conservation Zones
- the river basin management plans under the Water Framework Directive (England and
Wales:; Scotland:; and
Northern Ireland:
Consultation Criteria
This consultation is in line with the government’s Consultation Principles. This can be
found at
Copies of responses will be made available to the public on request. If you do not want
your response – including your name, contact details and any other personal information –
to be publicly available, please say so clearly in writing when you send your response to
the consultation. Please note, if your computer automatically includes a confidentiality
disclaimer, that won’t count as a confidentiality request.
Please explain why you need to keep details confidential. We will take your reasons into
account if someone asks for this information under freedom of information legislation. But,
because of the law, we cannot promise that we will always be able to keep those details
We will summarise all responses and place this summary on our website at:
This summary will include a list of names of organisations that responded but not people’s
personal names, addresses or other contact details.
If you have any comments or complaints about the consultation process, please address
them to Defra Consultation Co-ordinator, 629 Milbank, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P
3JR or email [email protected]
Thank you for your help in this matter. If you have any queries please contact us as above.
Yours sincerely,
Dominic Pattinson
Head of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive Implementation team