Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund)

The Interreg IVB North Sea Region Programme

The authors are solely responsible for the content of this report. Material included herein does not represent the opinion of the European Community, and the European Community is not responsible for any use that might be made of it.
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Analysis of the TIDE Estuarine Conflict Matrices

2a. General

One of the main research strands and deliverables within the TIDE project was the provision of a ‘Toolbox’ to assist integrated estuarine management in relation to a range of port development and flood risk protection scenarios and against a background of Natura 2000 compliance and enhancement.

One important tool within the ‘Toolbox’ approach used to assist components of the Management Planning & Governance strand in the TIDE project has been the development of Conflict Matrices for each estuary, and their subsequent analysis and integration. These matrices have been developed to provide a tool to facilitate the integration of the requirements and operations of a range of users and uses within an estuary on a management zone basis and to integrate these outcomes with other research strands such as management plan best practice, the development of the ecosystem services approach and the derivation of a series of defined mitigatory measures.

The individual estuary conflict matrices have been developed using Regional Working Groups (RWGs) established for each estuary, the composition of these groups being drawn from a range of ‘experts’ within each estuary representing the main areas of estuarine ‘use’.

Effectively, this has included representatives from a number of organisations including those tasked with statutory nature conservation management and flood risk protection; the ports industry; navigation; and other important user groups including representation of the diverse recreational user community, fisheries, and the scientific community.

The exact composition of the RWGs has however varied on an individual estuary basis reflecting the main uses and issues of that particular estuary and the management structures already in place.

For the TIDE estuaries, RWG composition was therefore not prescribed, but instead, required that there was sufficient representation within the group to address with expert knowledge, the main uses and issues within the estuary.

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