Dr Rebecca Kinnear (née Aspden)

SOTEAG Executive Officer

SOI 1.9
tel. 01334 463613
fax. 01334 463443

General Information

My role is to manage the Shetland Oil Terminal Environmental Advisory Group.

For more than three decades, SOTEAG has continued to look after the interests of the environment around Shetland’s Sullom Voe Terminal and Port. It is recognised globally as a pioneering, world-class model of integrated coastal management based on its independent scientific monitoring and expert advice.

Today, SOTEAG’s role remains both relevant and essential – not only to assure the preservation of Sheltand’s natural heritage, but also to share with the rest of the world its experience of environmentally responsible industrial activity in a distinctive cultural setting and sensitive natural environment.

Please browse our website to find out more about SOTEAG and the crucial monitoring work that is carried out: https://www.soteag.org.uk/


Previously I was PDRA and Laboratory Manager for SERG. I have a PhD in Marine Ecology from the University St Andrews and a BSc in Coastal and Marine Ecology from the University Plymouth. During august 2000 I carried out an internship at the Alfred Wegner Institute in Sylt, Germany, studying the effects of a tube building polycheate reef on the sediment and faunal diversities within and surrounding it.
I worked for a marine and freshwater consultancy agency (Unicomarine Ltd) prior to joining SERG. During this time I was involved in the identification of invertebrate fauna found within samples taken for various projects. These contracts were undertaken for many different reasons including port development and dredging, coastal protection, fishery studies, and habitat surveys.


Publication record

Aspden, R. J., Vardy, S., Perkins, R.G., Davidson, I.R., Bates, R., and Paterson, D.M. 2004. The effects of clam fishing on the properties of surface sediments in the lagoon of Venice, Italy. Hydrology and Earth Systems Sciences, 8(2):160-169.


Aspden, R. J., Vardy, S., and Paterson, D.M.  2004.  Salt Marsh Microbial Ecology: Microbes, Benthic Mats and Sediments Movement.  The Ecogeomorphology of Tidal Marshes : Coastal and Estuarine Studies Series (AGU).  Editors – Fagherazzi, S., Marani, M., and Blum, L.K.


F. Bulleri ; L. Benedetti-Cecchi ; M. Cusson ; E. Maggi ; F. Arenas ; R. J. Aspden ; I. Bertocci ; T. P. Crowe ; D. Davoult ; B. K. Eriksson ; S. Fraschetti ; C. Gollety ; J. N. Griffin ; S. R. Jenkins ; J. Kotta ; P. Kraufvelin ; M. Molis ; I. Sousa Pinto ; A. Terlizzi ; N. Valdivia ; D. M. Paterson.  2012.  Temporal stability of European rocky shore assemblages: variation across a latitudinal gradient and the role of habitat-formers. Oikos, 121: 1801-1809.


Consalvey, M., Vardy, S., Aspden, R. J., Davidson, I. and Paterson, D.M. 2004. Two years in the life of the Eden Estuary: using a toolbox to assess change. Delivering sustainable coasts: connecting science and policy. Cambridge Publications. 355-360.


Crowe, T.P., Cusson, M., Bulleri, F., Davoult, D., Arenas F.,Aspden R.J., Benedetti-Cecchi, L., , Bevilacqua, S., , Davidson, I.,  Defew, E., , Fraschetti, S., , Golle´ ty, C., , Griffin, J.N., , Herkul, K., Kotta, J., Migne´, A.,  Molis, M., , Nicol, S.K.,  Noël, L.M-L.J., Sousa-Pinto, I., Valdivia, N., Vaselli, S., Jenkins, S.R. 2013.  Large-Scale Variation in Combined Impacts of Canopy Loss and Disturbance on Community Structure and Ecosystem Functioning.  PLoS One, 8(6): e66238.


Cusson, M., Crowe, T.P., Araújo, R., Arenas, F., Aspden R.J., Bulleri, F., Davoult, D., Dyson, K., Fraschetti, S., Herk?l, K., Hubas, C., Jenkins, S., Kotta, J., Kraufvelin, P., J., Migne´, A.,  Molis, M., Mulholland, O., Noël, L.M-L.J., Paterson, D.M., Saunders, J., Somerfield, P.J., Sousa-Pinto, I., Spilmont, N., Terlizzi, A., Benedetti-Cecchi, L. 2014. Relationships between biodiversity and the stability of marine ecosystems: comparisons at a European scale using meta-analysis. Journal of Sea Research, 98: 5-14.


Eckman, J.E., Andres, M.S., Marinelli, R.L., Bowlin, E., Reid, R.P., Aspden, R. J., and Paterson, D.M. 2008. Wave and sediment dynamics along a shallow subtidal sandy beach inhabited by modern stromatolites. Geobiology, 6: 22–32.


Heip, C., Hummel, H., van Avesaath, P., Arvanitidis, C., Aspden., R., Austen, M., Boero, F., Bouma, T.J., Boxshall, G., Bucholz, F., Crowe, T., Delaney, A., Deprez, T., Emblow, C., Feral, J.P., Gasol, J.M., Gooday, A., Hardy, J., Ianora, A., Kraberg, A., Mackenzie, B., Ojaveer, H., paterson, D., Rumohr, H., Schiedek, D., Sokolowski, A., Somerfield, P., Sousa Pinto, I., Vincx, M., Weslawski, J.M., Nash, R. 2009.  Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Functioning.  ISSN 2009-2539.


Jonsson, P.R., van Duren, L.A., (Amielh, M., Asmus, R., Aspden, R.J., Daunys, D., Friedrichs, M., Friend, P.L., Olivier, F., Pope, N., Precht, E., Sauriau, P.G., and Schaaff, E.  2006.  Making water flow: a comparison of the hydrodynamic characteristics of 12 different benthic biological flumes.  Aquatic Ecology, 40 (4): 409-438.


Malarkey, J., Baas, J.H., Hope, J.A., Aspden, R.J., Parson, D.R., Peakall, J., Paterson, D.M., Schindler, R.J., Ye, L., Lichtman, I.D., Bass, S.J., Davies, A.G., Manning, A.J., Thorne, P.D.  2015, The Pervasive role of biological cohesion in bedform development.  Doi: 10.1038/ncomms7257.


Parsons, D.R., R.J. Schindler, J.A. Hope, J. Malarkey, J.H. Baas, J. Peakall, A.J. Manning, L. Ye, S. Simmons, D.M. Paterson, R.J. Aspden, S.J. Bass, A.G. Davies, I.D. Lichtman and P.D. Thorne, 2016. The role of biophysical cohesion on subaqueous bed form size. Geophysical Research Letters, 43, 1566-1573, doi: 10.1002/2016GL067667.  http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2016GL067667/full


Paterson, D.M., Aspden, R. J., Visscher, P.T., Consalvey, M., Andres, M., Decho, A.W., Stolz, J., Reid, P.R. 2008. Light-Dependant Biostabilisation of Sediments by Stromatolite Assemblages. PLoS One; 3(9):e3176.


Schindler, R. J., Parsons, D. R., Ye, L., Hope, J. A., Baas, J. H., Peakall, J., Manning, A. J., Aspden, R. J., Malarkey, J., Simmons, S., Paterson, D. M., Lichtman, I. D., Davies, A. G., Thorne, P. D. & Bass, S. J. 2015.  Sticky stuff: redefining bedform prediction in modern and ancient environments.   Geology, pp339-402.


Stoltz, J.F., Reid, P.R., Visscher, P.T., Decho, A. W., Norman, R.S., Aspden, R. J., Bowlin, E., Franks, J., Foster, J.S.,. Paterson, D.M., Przekop, K.M., GRAHAM J.C. Underwood, G.J.C., and Prufert-Bebout, L. 2009.  The microbial communities of the modern marine stromatolites at Highborne Cay, Bahamas.  Atoll Research Bulletin, 567: 1-29.





Paterson, D. M., Aspden, R. J. & Reid, P. 2010.  Biodynamics of Modern Marine Stromatolites, In:

Microbial Mats: Modern and Ancient Microorganisms in Stratified Systems: Cellular Origin, Life in Extreme Habitats and Astrobiology. Seckbach, J. & Oren, A. (eds.). NY: Springer, Vol. 14, p. 223-235


Solan, M., Aspden, R.J., Paterson, D,M.  2012.  Marine biodiversity futures and ecosystem functioning: frameworks, methodologies and integration.  Oxford University Press.


Paterson, D.M., Aspden, R. J., and Black, K. 2009.  Intertidal flats: Ecosytem functioning of soft sediment systems. In: Coastal Wetlands: An Integrated Ecosystem Approach. pp317-338. Elsevier Academic Press


Franks, J., Reid, R.P., Aspden, R.J., Underwood, G.J.C., Paterson, D.M., Prufert-Bebout, L., and Stoltz, J.F. 2010.  Ooid Accreting Diatom Communities from the Modern Marine Stromatolites at Highborne Cay, Bahamas, In:  Microbial Mats: Modern and Ancient Microorganisms in Stratified Systems: Cellular Origin, Life in Extreme Habitats and Astrobiology. Seckbach, J. & Oren, A. (eds.). NY: Springer, Vol. 14, p. 275-285.

(source: symbiosis database)