Search Legislation

Marine Act (Northern Ireland) 2013

Section 8: Decisions affected by a marine plan

This section makes provision about the effect which “any appropriate marine plans” (subsections (6) & (7)) are to have on the taking of certain decisions by “a public authority” (section 48).

Subsection (1) provides that all “authorisation and enforcement decisions” must be taken in accordance with any appropriate marine plans, unless relevant considerations indicate otherwise.  Subsection (2) requires that a public authority give its reasons if making decisions which do not follow the marine plan.

Subsection (3) requires a public authority to have regard to any appropriate marine plan when taking any decision which relates to a function capable of affecting the Northern Ireland inshore region that is not an authorisation or enforcement decision.

Subsection (4) defines authorisation or enforcement decisions.  These decisions relate to the licensing (or other authorisation) of particular activities which affect, or might affect, the Northern Ireland inshore region; the conditions attached to those authorisations; and the enforcement action to be taken with a view to securing that any such activities are carried out only under licence, and in accordance with any conditions attached to the licence, and not in breach of any prohibition or restriction.

Subsections (6) and (7) describe when a marine plan will be an appropriate marine plan and, therefore, affect decisions.  The effect of subsection (6) is that any marine plan for an area is an appropriate marine plan for the purposes of decisions relating to that area, subject to subsection (7).  The effect of subsection (7) is that a marine plan for an area in the Northern Ireland inshore region is not an appropriate marine plan for the purposes of decisions relating to the exercise of “retained functions” (defined in section 60 of the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009) unless the marine plan states that it includes provisions for retained functions; it was adopted with the agreement of the Secretary of State; and it was prepared and adopted whilst a MPS governed marine planning for the Northern Ireland inshore region.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the Northern Ireland Assembly department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes accompany all Acts of the Northern Ireland Assembly.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources