Explanatory Notes

Islands (Scotland) Act 2018

2018 asp 12

6 July 2018

Overview of the Act


Key definitions

Section 23 – Meaning of “Scottish island marine area”

56.This section defines the “Scottish island marine area” for the purposes of Part 6. This is the geographical area which the new licensing scheme created under this Part will cover.

57.The first limitation on “Scottish island marine area” is that it is part of the “Scottish marine area” as that term is defined in Part 1 of the 2010 Act. The “Scottish marine area” is itself within the seaward limits of the territorial sea of the United Kingdom and includes the bed and subsoil of the sea within that area. The boundaries between the parts of the territorial sea for Scotland and other parts of the United Kingdom are determined under an Order in Council made under section 126(2) of the Scotland Act 1998 – currently the Scottish Adjacent Waters Boundaries Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/1126). Within that, the “Scottish island marine area” is therefore further defined as that portion of Scotland’s territorial sea (the Scottish marine area) which is up to a radius of 12 nautical miles from an island, measured from the low water mark of the ordinary spring tide. Although section 24(2) qualifies the practical application of the licensing regime to areas that are adjacent to an inhabited island, any island (whether inhabited or uninhabited) counts for the prior conceptual purpose of measuring the 12-mile radius, as there may be some variation in habitation over time.