EGCP Business Plan 2012/13
1 Introduction 1.1 Setting the scene The East Grampian Coastal Partnership was formed in 2005 with the aim of delivering Integrated Coastal Zone Management on a non-statutory basis between Kinnaird Head, Fraserburgh, and the mouth of the North Esk at St Cyrus.
Our work has included delivering a range of projects that meets the Partnershipâ€™s vision e.g. the first Seaside Awards in this part of the north east, producing the areaâ€™s first State of the Coast Report and leading the development of the North East of Scotland Marine Habitat Action Plan.
The EGCP, along with many other stakeholders, has contributed to the process that led to the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 and the introduction of new systems for planning, licensing and management at the national and regional levels. This context will be pivotal to the future of the EGCP and our work over the coming year.
A National Marine Plan for Scotland is expected during 2012/13 but, given the uncertainties relating to regional marine planning, the future role of EGCP remains unclear at this time. As a result, we are only able to produce a business plan for a one year period. However, the Partnership is committed to continuing to deliver ICZM and is keen to work towards establishing the foundations for regional marine planning in its area
1.2 The potential for EGCP in the new system Marine planning is a system to guide, regulate and address activities in the marine environment. It is different from terrestrial planning in that the system will have to work in multiple dimensions, a fluid environment and with a strong real time element. It will not be a process that simply involves setting out a three-year plan to deal with a largely unchanging physical environment. The Act provides for the functions relating to marine planning at the regional level to be delegated to a Marine Planning Partnership but does not stipulate how the Partnership is to be formed. It is anticipated that there will be a lead partner in each Marine Planning Partnership.
Marine Scotland is expected to launch a further consultation exercise during 2012 seeking comments on the proposed boundaries for Scottish Marine Regions, which will subsequently be planned for by Marine Planning Partnerships. When the relevant proposals are confirmed, EGCP will be happy to work with partners to speedily deliver any structural changes that are required.
2 2012 -13: A year of opportunity EGCP has, like most other organisations, faced major financial challenges for the last few years. However, in 2012 new funding streams have been launched that have the potential allow EGCP to move a number of projects to delivery.
Axis 4 of the European Fisheries Fund
The European Fisheries Fund aims to aid capital investment in the fishing, aquaculture and fish processing industries. Previously, there have been three tranches of funding allocations:Axis 1 - Targeting vessel improvements Axis 2 -Targeting aquaculture Axis 3 - Targeting common interests such as training, ports and developing new markets Axis 4 of the European Fisheries Fund provides support for the sustainable development of fisheries areas and is available to Fisheries Local Action Groups (FLAGs) who represent the fisheries area in which they are based, and who implement an Axis 4 local development strategy for their area. The aim of Axis 4 is to increase the capacity of local fishing communities and business networks to build knowledge and skills, innovate and co-operate in order to tackle local fisheries development objectives. In particular, Axis 4 supports measures to promote: •
the strengthening and competitiveness of fisheries areas
restructuring and redirecting economic activities
diversifying and value adding activities
supporting small fisheries and tourism-related infrastructure and services for the benefit of small fisheries communities
protecting the environment in fisheries areas
re-establishing the production potential following natural and industrial disasters
inter-regional and trans-national co-operation.
Beneficiaries will include micro, small, medium sized enterprises, third sector organisations and public sector organisations. We have already made a successful bid to this Fund which we intend to follow up with a number of larger bids. See Section 4 for further details. 2.2
Coastal Communities Fund
In 2011 the UK Government announced that 50% of the revenues from The Crown Estate’s marine assets would be put back to local communities though the Coastal Communities Fund. In order to receive funds projects will have to show that they will contribute to a common set of programme outcomes. All projects will have to meet the first of four outcomes: 1
Coastal communities are better able to use their assets (physical, natural, social, economic and cultural) to promote sustainable economic growth and jobs.
and one of the remaining three: 2
Coastal Communities have a greater capacity to create a sustainable economic future and are better equipped to adapt to change.
Partnerships are developed to support economic innovation, enterprise and investment either within a community and/ or across a number of coastal communities.
People have more opportunities for training and skills development, including volunteering.
In 2011/12 EGCP was not involved with any application submitted to this fund. However, this does not rule out an approach in 2013 either by the Partnership itself or in collaboration with other eligible organisations. 2.3
Funding applications for EGCP-managed projects will be the focus of discrete bids to the European Fisheries Fund, the Coastal Communities Fund and other forms of financial support. Annex 1 shows a draft of a Green Tourism Plan while Annex 2 shows the priorities identified by Aberdeenshire residents relating to Axis 4 projects. Proposed projects, with their costings, can be drawn into the EGCP budget as and when funding is secured.
3 Work delivered in 2011/12 3.1
Sectoral Interactions Matrix
During 2011/12, EGCP’s major body of work was the delivery of a marine data project for Marine Scotland. This work involved carrying out interviews with a range of the major stakeholders in the area, investigating their relationships with other users of the marine environment and presenting the gathered data in the form of a Sectoral Interactions Matrix.
The development of the Sectoral Interactions Matrix proved to be an extremely useful and interesting exercise that enabled the Partnership to reach a wide cross section of our stakeholders and gather valuable data. In addition we worked with Aberdeen University to demonstrate how the sectoral interactions data could be linked to spatial data in order to create a simple-to-use method that allows decision makers to access the information necessary to underpin the development of spatial planning and management. This ‘added value’ element to the gathered data was demonstrated in a well-received presentation given at the 2011 Scottish Coastal Forum conference. 3.2
During 2011/12 EGCP has delivered a number of projects relating to Green Tourism: • Agreement of a Green Tourism Strategy for the Partnership • Publishing 10,000 copies of a 20 page Green Tourism Guide highlighting the areas communities and attractions. This has proved so successful local Tourist Offices needed restocking within a week of delivery • Running five ‘Know Your Coast’ training days during March 2012, showing coastal wildlife highlights to front-line Tourist Office staff, B&B owners and others. • Work with Aberdeenshire Council’s Film Officer to promote nature based filming • Preliminary development work for a Green Tourism website. 3.3 MEMAG Chair of EGCP represents the SCF on the Menie Environmental Monitoring Action Group, the group set up to provide a monitoring framework in relation to the development of the
Trump golf course at Menie, Aberdeenshire. During 2011/12, two meetings were attended with reports fed back to the SCF and Marine Scotland on progress with this initiative.
4 Key deliverables in 2012/13 4.1
Sectoral Interactions & Spatial Information
During 2012/13, EGCP will continue to develop the Sectoral Interactions Matrix. Additional interviews will be undertaken to give a wider range of views and more local detail. We also aim to complete the work to merge such information with spatial data on activities to create a straight forward system for communicating issues for the future planning needs of the area. 4.2 Marine and Coastal Policy review At present a large number of policies and plans from Aberdeen City Council and Aberdeenshire Council impact upon the East Grampian Coast. Some policies may have to reflect the landfall aspects of offshore renewable energy devices. During 2012/13 EGCP will carry out an audit to identify these policies and their effect on the coastal and marine area. 4.3 Green Tourism During 2012/13 EGCP will seek funding to deliver a Green Tourism Plan (see Annex 1). Estimated costs are around £30,000 and the work will require 10 days of Officer time. 4.4 Seafood Festival and Trail The East Grampian Coast is home to some of the most important fishing ports in Europe. However, it is not the easiest place to find fresh local produce either sold wet or prepared in cafes and restaurants. The aim of this project is to increase the availability and knowledge of local seafood though the creation of a seafood trail and festival. This is a large project that fits into two stages Stage 1 Scoping, budgeting and seeking funding Stage 2 Delivery EGCP has received £3600 from the Aberdeenshire Axis 4 funding for Stage 1, which will be delivered though an internship. A bid for the second stage (circa £50,000 to £80,000) will be made in the second or third quarter of 2012/13 4.5 Implementing Coastal and Marine Habitat Action Plans The EGCP Project Manager chairs the North East LBAP Marine and Coastal Delivery Group. The Partnership’s previous work to develop Habitat Action Plans (HAPs) has been a major first step in assessing baseline biodiversity data and considering what should be done in the north east to enhance these important habitats. However, without an implementation mechanism to capitalise on the work already undertaken, the initiative will lose momentum.
We believe that this is a significant piece of work that will involve close co-operation with partner organisations within the North East of Scotland Local Biodiversity Partnership to deliver the desired outcomes listed in the various Habitat Action Plans. In order to help achieve this, in 2012/13 we aim to begin the process of delivering these requirements, such as awareness raising, improving coverage of habitat monitoring and preparing advice for planners dealing with applications in the marine and coastal area.
4.6 Core work - ICZM delivery
The EGCP will continue to work to deliver ICZM through partnership working and information delivery. This will be achieved through annual and topic based workshops, newsletters and work on individual projects and themes. The Partnership will use the EGCP State of the Coast Report and the ongoing work on sectoral interactions to contribute to the fundamental information required as a basis for regional marine planning.
4.6.1 The EGCP will continue work to educate and involve the local community through publicity, presentations, a regularly updated website and web based forum. It will promote good practice and provide details of present and upcoming consultations that affect the local coast. In order to improve networking, the Partnership will update the Whoâ€™s Who guide that will help stakeholders to find the relevant contacts.
4.6.2 The EGCP will continue to maintain strong links with other coastal stakeholders and partnerships. In addition it will maintain contact with the Scottish Coastal Forum, which is a high level group of coastal-focussed stakeholders who deal with issues at the national level. It will also endeavour to learn from good practice elsewhere and communicate successful projects and work in many areas.
4.6.3 Whilst EGCP is considering a number of potential projects and themes, it is important that the capacity to pursue opportunities and work to remedy new issues is retained. New projects and work plans will continue to be presented at AGMs and annual seminars. In addition it will continue to ask stakeholders for their ideas and priorities and endeavour to meet these where feasible. Special
attention will be given to align the priorities of both Local Authorities with this Business Plan
5 Budget During 2010 EGCP implemented major cuts to reduce outgoings; this included a 60% reduction in staffing and the closure of a number of major projects including the Community Grants Scheme. In 2011/12, the Partnership continued with one member of staff working a four-day week. The budget for 2012/13 will follow closely the spending profile for 2011/12 but with the hope to reinstate the Project Manager to a full-time post during the third quarter of the financial year. Some further savings are expected to arise from the relocation of the EGCP office to a small office within the Marine Scotland office at Torry. It should also be noted that some technical support will be accessed through the James Hutton Institute in Aberdeen. The East Grampian Coastal Partnership believes that we cannot make any more cuts and still deliver the work that is needed. INCOME
Scottish Natural Heritage
Aberdeen City Council
Aberdeen City and Shire Economic Forum
Peterhead Port Authority
Aberdeen Harbour Board
To be identified
2010/11 Actual £26,670
2011/12 Actual £30,023
2012/13 Predicted £28,500
Travel and Subsistence
Hutton Institute Management Fee
Newsletter Website Conference Green Tourism Seaside Award Seafood trail
£3,618 £0 £0 £0 £0
£3,618 £60 £265 £0 £0 £0
£4,488 £60 £280 £5,000 £300 £3,600
2012/13 will be an exciting year for EGCP with the move to Marine Scotland in Torry and hopefully the start of 2 new major funded projects. We should remain approximately neutral in terms of income and outgoing costs.
EGCP green tourism strategy Introduction EGCP has started to work on promoting Green Tourism between Fraserburgh and St Cyrus with the development of a visitor’s guide, ‘Know your coast’ days and a soon to be launched website. This document aims to show work that EGCP can Influence, facilitate and deliver over the next 2 years if resourced. Increase awareness of Potential Aberdeenshire Council, Aberdeen City Council and Scottish Enterprise are committed to an approved development corridor between Aberdeen and Peterhead, encouraging the movement towards greater use of hydrogen-based energy and facilitating lifestyle and leisure choices within this area. This project is known as ‘Energetica’ and is likely to result in considerable development around Bridge of Don, Ellon and Peterhead. Whilst projects such as Energetica are focussing political will on improving visitor and residents’ understanding of the area more can still be done. The potential for Green Tourism is yet to be realised and there is still a feeling that Deeside and Distilleries are all that the area has for visitors. East Grampian Coastal Partnership can: Level Influence
Target Act as a champion for Green Tourism in the areas coast Promote the coast as a key asset to the area competing with other cities in the Global energy sector
Facilitate a Green Tourism Group to develop and deliver projects Deliver four presentations to key groups highlighting the potential for Green Tourism To gain representation of key groups that Influence the coastal policy
Progress Ongoing Ongoing via events such as All Energy Exhibition and support for promotions staff Completed, will be called together as needed 3 talks given in last 12 months, ongoing Ongoing
Promote opportunities EGCP will work to promote opportunities to rebrand and publicise the area to highlight what it has to offer for green tourism and the enjoyment of both visitors and local people. Influence
To promote Aberdeen as the best city in Europe for watching whales and dolphins To promote Stonehaven as the best place in the UK to see white-beaked dolphins
Ongoing though Newsletter, website and web blog
To promote Fowlshugh and the Bullars of Buchan as places to see puffins for local people
Ongoing though Newsletter, website and web blog
To promote geese watching
Ongoing though Newsletter, website and web blog
Newsletter, website and web blog
Promote the Ythan and Forvie for watching birds and seals
Ongoing though Newsletter, website and web blog
To promote the ferries to the Northern Isles as ways to see more wildlife on a holiday To develop a coastal wildlife and landscape trail including areas to the North and South of the East Grampian coast To work with other groups to show journalists and travel writers the best that our coast has to offer Deliver a Green Tourism/Wildlife Website for the area which will link to the Visit Scotland website Develop Green Tourism App Work with Serco Northlink to improve visitor information about the area, what to see on board and what to do whilst waiting for the ferry to leave Aberdeen Promote area with stall at Scottish Bird Fair
Target for 2013 Target for 2013
As and when Complete Summer 2012 Complete Spring 2013 Partially Completed, improved 2013 Possible for Summer 2012
Infrastructure to match expectation Whilst the East Grampian coast has much to offer a great deal of the infrastructure is either not fit for purpose or in need of major repair. Whilst financial constraints make this difficult recognising that some money is available and that improving coastal infrastructure wisely will offer a large return for a small investment Influence
To promote the regeneration of Aberdeen Beach To promote the expansion of the Coastal path network
Ongoing but limited options Ongoing
To aid and influence projects such as Energetica to take green tourism into account
To create a network of shelters and information points along the coast To develop a green tourism App for i-phone and Android To work to develop a coastal city park from Aberdeen Harbour to Cove
Target for Summer 2014 Ongoing Ongoing but limited options
Connecting business Developing Green Tourism in the area has the potential to create jobs; EGCP aims to highlight the opportunities in this sector Influence Facilitate Deliver
Lobby WildScotland to hold events in the area To facilitate the creation of green tourism business groups to jointly develop economic opportunities To hold a Green Tourism business and jobs event to show possible opportunities in this sector
As and when Target for 2013 Target Spring 2013
Managing the coast Increasing visitor numbers and opportunities to enjoy wildlife should not damage the very thing that this sector depends on. Due to our work preparing for Marine Spatial Planning EGCP can help deliver this balance
Promoting WISE accreditation to new wildlife boat operators and the introduction of the ‘dolphin space programme’ into the area if needed Promoting visitor management plans for popular sites such as the Ythan Estuary and the Don Mouth Work to minimize the damage that new coastal developments do to sensitive areas of the coast To provide a link between Green Tourism and the aims of the Marine (Scotland) Act 2010 To deliver an enhanced data project to understand where activities are taking place and where activities should be sustainably developed
Ongoing contact has been made with Clyde Clippers who are operating in Aberdeen harbour Ongoing As required Ongoing Ongoing through data project
Educating tourist points of contact The people that tourist come into contact with are the best sales force the area has, educating these people about what the area has to offer is a cost effective way of getting the Green Tourism message across Deliver
To carry out an Airport taxi drivers training days To carry out 5 ‘discover your coast’ trips a year for front of house tourism staff Promote ‘get out and try’ events for local people to develop new coastal interests
Target Spring 2013 5 delivered, 3 planned for Autumn and 5 Spring Target 2013