State of West African marine protected areas 2022

16 April 2024

This report is intended to serve as a tool to support decision-making regarding marine protected areas (MPAs) at the local, national and regional levels, while meeting operational needs. Furthermore, it presents a snapshot of several elements of marine conservation in West Africa and offers reflections on specific themes to better understand and tackle MPAs issue in West Africa.


The marine protected areas of West Africa are located in an eco‑region whose major characteristic is the presence of upwellings. Depending on the more or less strong influence of these upwellings and the terrigenous contributions of fluvial origin, these areas are linked to different coastal ecosystems which form a continuum with regard to their strong interactions. The eco-regional dimension of these protected areas is confirmed by the transboundary migrations of pelagic, turtles, marine mammals and waterbirds, not forgetting those of artisanal fishermen.

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