The importance of the study design and the need for comparability of methods has been acknowledged in the context of the environmental impact assessment of the Marine Renewable Energy Sector. The standardization of the EIA process of Marina Renewable Infrastructures is still far to be sorted out and a good deal of variation exists in the considered parameters and receptors as in the methods adopted during the EIA process. Among the several statistical designs that have been proposed to assess the effects of environmental perturbations, the Before-and-After-Control-Impact or BACI design is the one commonly recommended over the others since it is believed to mitigate chance that unmeasured covariates are influencing observed effects. A clear guideline on how to identify the control status to be assumed in the BACI design studies is still lacking. This study demonstrates how reference scenarios could be identified and used as control status based on the correlations of the ecosystem components (i.e. the wind-wave climate conditions, benthic habitats and macrovertebrate populations) when defining the control sites in BACI studies.