Purpose & vision

Management purpose and vision

The vision for the Carmarthen Bay & Estuaries European Marine Site is one of a quality marine environment, where the habitats and species of the site are in a condition as good as or better than when the site was selected, where human activities co-exist in harmony with the habitats and species of the site and where use of the marine environment within the EMS is undertaken sustainably.

The Habitats Directive does not include any intention to exclude human activities (commercial or recreational) from Natura 2000 sites. The aim is to ensure that those activities are undertaken in ways which do not threaten the features the site is designated for.

The purpose of the management scheme is to set the framework within which activities in the Carmarthen Bay & Estuaries EMS will be managed in ways compatible with the achievement of the conservation objectives. It is therefore primarily to guide and help the relevant authorities in their decision-making and management.  It is not, and should not be confused as, a full set of management regulations for the site.

Strategic objectives

  • To meet the requirements of the EU Habitats and Birds Directives by securing and maintaining, for the long-term, the features of the site at favourable conservation status; safeguarding them from damage or significant disturbance, and safeguarding dynamic natural habitat structures and functions.
  • To meet the obligations of UK Habitats Regulations.
  • To make an appropriate, long-term, contribution to the favourable conservation status of the Natura 2000 series of sites and habitats and species of European conservation importance.
  • To assist relevant authorities in reviewing the management of the EMS, and identifying adjustments or changes to the current management of the site that may be required to ensure the achievement of the conservation objectives.
  • To raise public awareness of the site’s biodiversity and conservation value.
  • To integrate with other relevant strategies for safeguarding biodiversity.
  • To integrate with, and positively influence the environmental sustainability of relevant sectoral, spatial and regional plans and strategies insofar as they relate to the site.


The relevant authorities are committed to the management scheme:

  • seeking to secure the necessary management through voluntary co-operation and partnership wherever possible rather than regulation
  • being an ongoing process that aids decision-making by relevant authorities, and informs competent authorities
  • continually evolving and adapting to take account of changes in and changing information about activities, issues, scientific information, management practices and legal obligations.