Norway (North Sea)

The North Sea and Skagerrak are more strongly influenced by human activity than the Norwegian Sea and the Barents Sea: These marine areas contain some of the busiest shipping routes in the world and support intensive fisheries and a large-scale oil and gas industry. Climate change and ocean acidification are expected to have increasing impacts in the future.

Work on an integrated management plan for the Norwegian part of the North Sea-Skagerrak area, similar in approach to the plans for the Barents and Norwegian seas, was completed and implemented in 2013.



Authority:Informal agreement among ministers; 2002 white paper on marine environment ("Protecting the Riches of the Sea") and creation of Inter-ministerial Steering Committee and Expert Group in 2004 charged with developing an integrated management plan
Lead Planning Agency:Norwegian Environment Agency
Financing:Funding exists to fully implement the plan
Size of Planning Area:1,400,000 km² (covers areas outside the baseline -one nm off the coast- as well as fishery protection zone around the Svalbard archipelago)
Time required to complete the plans:2-4 years
Drivers of MSP:Need for a more integrated approach; Perceived conflicts among uses, e.g., marine mining v. fishing; Marine conservation or biodiversity concerns; New and emerging uses of the marine area, e.g., wind energy, aquaculture
Stakeholder participation:Throughout the MSP process
Sectors included in planning:All major sectors including fishing
Relation to coastal management:Weak connection to adjacent coastal management program
Relation to marine protected area management:MPAs planned under a separate process
Plan approval:Approved by the Norwegian Parliament (the Storting) in 2006. Plan implemented.
Legal Status of Plan:Regulatory/Enforceable
Plan revision:Review/revision every 4-5 years
Performance monitoring and evaluation:Evaluation results used to revise and adapt first plan