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D1.1 Description of MSP relevant information for Atlantic countries.


This report initiates an investigation of relevant information supporting the implementation of Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) in the European Atlantic. It provides an overview of the baseline environmental and biological characteristics and legal arrangements for Maritime Spatial Planning in the Atlantic region. It also provides detailed information on the geography of the region including a description of benthic and pelagic habitats, physical features, oceanographic characteristics, legal and governance arrangements for MSP in five Atlantic European countries involved in the SIMAtlantic project: France, Spain, Portugal, Ireland and the United Kingdom (Northern Ireland and England). 

Application in MSP:
Type of Issue:
Type of practice:
Stage of MSP cycle:
Cross-border / trans-national aspect:
Coherence with other processes:
Key words:

Questions this practice may help answer: 

  • What are the environmental and biological features of the Atlantic region?
  • What are the legal and governance arrangements for MSP in the Atlantic region?

Implementation Context: 

The report was produced within the framework of the SIMAtlantic project.

Aspects / Objectives: 

The report aims to establish a foundation of understanding for the production of future project outputs and the definition of an overarching vision which should reflect the characteristics of the Atlantic marine region and draw together the findings from the project work.


  • A comprehensive literature review was conducted;
  • Environmental data, as well as information on legal frameworks and status of MSP implementation in the SIMAtlantic area, was collected.

Main Outputs / Results: 

This global overview sets out the first key features of SIMAtlantic project area, both from a geographical and ecological point of view as well as from the institutional point of view, on the implementation of MSP. 


The methodology provided is applicable for characterisation of other marine regions.

Responsible Entity: 

SIMAtlantic project.

Costs / Funding Source: 

This document was produced as part of the SIMAtlantic project (Grant Agreement: EASME/EMFF/2018/ 

Contact person: 

SIMAtlantic project.