Assessing risk to Scottish MPA search features at the MPA regional scale

Assessing Risk for the Scottish MPA Project

This document outlines how the risk assessments for each MPA search feature have been developed internally by NatureScot and JNCC to inform step 2e of the Selection Guidelines.

Risk, in the context of this paper, is defined as the likelihood that a search feature will be exposed to a pressure to which it is sensitive. Assessing risk has relevance to step 2e of the selection guidelines, which states: The search location contains features considered to be at risk of significant damage by human activity. The accompanying note states ‘The emphasis should be on identifying risk to features rather than risk to individual search locations. For biodiversity the focus should be on the presence of features considered to be at risk of damage at a regional level’.

  • The following steps have been applied to assess risk for each Scottish MPA region for each search feature:
  • Identifying pressures and associated activities to which search features are sensitive
  • Exposure assessment by MPA region
  • Risk assessment
  • Overall Risk assessment for region (sensitivity x exposure)
  • Search feature risk assessments

Pages: 14
Published: 2014

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