The high and rapidly increasing demand for maritime space for various purposes, such as: shipping and fishing, production of energy from renewable sources, oil and gas exploitation, environmental conservation, tourism and aquaculture, as well as the multiple pressures on coastal resources, require integrated planning and management approach. In the law of the European Union, maritime governance has been developed in the Integrated Maritime Policy. The aim of this article is to show maritime spatial planning as a tool that enables public authorities to apply an integrated and trans-boundary approach.
The main aim of the maritime spatial planning is to promote sustainable development and growth in the maritime sector, applying an ecosystem-based approach, and to achieve the coexistence of relevant activities and uses. In order to achieve that purpose, Member States should ensure that the planning process results in a comprehensive planning taking into consideration inter alia long-term changes due to climate change.