The project seeks to increase transnational coherence of shipping routes and energy corridors in Maritime Spatial Plans (MSP) in the Baltic Sea Region. This will prevent cross border mismatches and secures transnational connectivity, as well as efficient use of Baltic Sea space.
The project helps develop the most appropriate framework conditions for Blue Growth activities (e.g. maritime transportation, offshore energy exploitation, coastal tourism etc.) for the coming 15 years, thereby increasing investors’ security.
A precondition for this is to create institutional capacities of Maritime Spatial Planning (MSP) bodies. Based on past experiences and a sector involvement strategy a structured and coordinated involvement process with relevant national/transnational stakeholder fora will be carried out in close cooperation with stakeholders from the shipping and the energy industry. Project partners will find out about requirements for MSP of the shipping and energy sector (based on forecasted economic, environmental, technological and land-sea related developments) and their spatial implications. The information gathered will be visualised in scenarios with the help of the MSP Challenge, a computer supported simulation game based on accurate data and feedback that gives maritime spatial planners insight in the diverse challenges of sustainable planning of human activities in the marine and coastal ecosystem.
The project will improve access to relevant transnational MSP data needed for making spatial allocations for shipping and energy users in MSP by piloting the first ever BSR MSP data infrastructure. This infrastructure will allow for decentralised storage and access of MSP data beyond the project’s lifetime, and may be expanded to other sectors. In order to come up with planning solutions, maritime spatial planners will identify transnational cross sectoral planning issues.
Planners will jointly agree on planning criteria, taking into account sector requirements for MSP and the ecosystem approach. They will determine options for planning solutions for shipping routes and energy infrastructure, which will be consulted with sectors via the MSP Challenge. The final suggested planning solutions will inform national MSP process and, hence, are expected to be taken up in national Maritime Spatial Plans at their development or revision stage.
In order to set conditions for a continuous MSP coordination on linear infrastructures, the project will develop recommendations for a BSR agreement on transboundary consultations on linear infrastructures within the MSP process. Consequently, increased transnational coherence of linear infrastructures in MSP will be achieved.
Highlights by mid-term:
The partnership assessed the spatial implications for shipping route planning in order to find a basis for spatial planners to better synchronise the planning procedure for shipping routes with other planning needs, such as energy. Therefore the project elaborated a report displaying the past, present and anticipated future development of shipping in the Baltic Sea region.
A maritime spatial planning board game was developed and tested during the EUSBSR Annual Forum in Berlin in June 2017. The game is one step towards the MSP challenge 2050 Baltic Sea edition, a computer supported simulation game that gives maritime spatial planners as well as stakeholders insight in the diverse challenges of sustainable planning. The experience gathered from the board game session helps the partnership to further develop the computer simulation game which is one of the main outcomes of the project.