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Marine Scotland Science (MSS) undertakes a wide range of monitoring covering many aspects of the Scottish marine ecosystem.

Monitoring is undertaken in Scottish Inshore Waters, using networks of volunteers and automatic recording equipment, as well as in Scottish Offshore Waters, using the MSS research vessels MRV Alba na Mara and MRV Scotia.

Marine Scotland Science also participates national monitoring programmes, such as:

  • UK Marine Monitoring and Assessment Strategy (UKMMAS)
  • UK Marine Environmental Change Network (MECN)
  • UK Marine Environmental Data and Information Network (MEDIN)

This group provides published data from monitoring these activities. For many activities, there are national or international standards for how the monitoring is undertaken.


UK Open Government Licence (OGL)

Other Access

The information on this page (the dataset metadata) is also available in these formats.


via the DKAN API

Pilot Scottish Beach Litter Performance Indicators (SBLPI)

Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science Vol 10 No 4

A range of pilot Scottish Beach Litter Performance Indicators (SBLPIs) are proposed which aim to allow the Scottish Government to monitor the state of litter on its beaches, as well as judge the success of its policies in reducing sources of marine plastics and litter. The SGLPIs will form the basis of adding aspects of beach litter assessment to the 2019 update of Scotland’s Marine Atlas and the Marine Scotland MAPS NMPi (National Marine Plan interactive) interactive tool, part of the Marine Scotland Open Data Network, which has been designed to assist in the development of national and regional marine planning. The pilot indicators were initially prepared for the Scottish Government Litter Evidence and Analysis Group, November 2018.

Turrell, W.R. 2019. Pilot Scottish Beach Litter Performance Indicators (SBLPI). Scottish Marine and Freshwater Science Vol 10 No 4, 73pp. DOI: 10.7489/12208-1
Release Date
Spatial / Geographical Coverage Location
UK Open Government Licence (OGL)
Data Dictionary

The SGLPIs are generated using data generously provided by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) Beachwatch programme. This extensive citizen-science programme is a fundamentally important monitoring activity needed to understand man’s impact on our marine environment. More details of the programme can be found at Many thanks to MCS and all the volunteers who have painstakingly collected the data over the last decade.

Contact Name
Marine Scotland
Contact Email
Public Access Level