What is a Marine Aggregate Regional Environmental Assessment?

A Marine Aggregate Regional Environmental Assessment (MAREA) is a voluntary initiative, endorsed by the British Marine Aggregates Producers Association (BMAPA), The Crown Estate and the Marine Management Organisation (formerly the Marine and Fisheries Agency).

Even though the MAREA process is non-statutory, guidance has been provided by the Regulatory Advisors Group (RAG), members of which include Natural England, Cefas, the JNCC and English Heritage.

MAREA Objectives

The main objectives of a MAREA are to describe the baseline environmental characteristics in an region with several marine aggregate licence/application areas and to evaluate the potential cumulative and in-combination effects of all the existing and planned future dredging operations. As part of the planning and permitting process, Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) will still be carried out for individual licence applications. 

It is anticipated that MAREAs will allow the EIAs to be considered in a regional context and therefore allow a better understanding of the interaction with the surrounding environment and other sea users.


The first MAREA was completed in 2003 for the East Channel Region. Since this early study, guidance for MAREA has been provided by the Regulatory Advisors Group (RAG).  The RAG guidance is provided as an appendix to published MAREAs (see TEDA pages).

Data Use Policy and Disclaimer

Conditions of Use

The regional associations agree to make all data produced by their regional environmental assessment programmes available for use by interested parties.  Use of the data is subject to the following conditions:

1 – Use of data is prohibited without the express written permission of the relevant regional association.

2 – Prior to provision of data, parties must provide a clear, unequivocal, description to the relevant regional association of how the data will used and the audience to which the resulting information will be presented.

3 – Parties using the data must acknowledge the source of the data as follows:  Data is presented courtesy of the <Insert Name of Regional Association>.

4 – Parties provided with permission to use the data must not subsequently provide the information for use by any other person, organisation or company.

5 – The data may not be used for sale or reward.

Data Disclaimer

The regional associations use all reasonable methods and quality control checks to ensure the accuracy of information they publish. It should be noted however that the regional associations d not warrant that such information will be free from errors and the user acknowledges that the data published may include inaccuracies or typographical errors. Amendments are periodically made to the information presented by the regional associations. The regional associations may make improvements and/or changes to their data at any time.

The regional associations and/or their respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the data presented for purposes other than that intended.  In no event shall the regional associations and/or their suppliers be liable for any, indirect, incidental, special, or consequential damages arising out of, or in any way connected with, the use of their data. 


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