Management Plan

This Plan sets out how the Ascension Island Government and our partners, will manage the Ascension Island Marine Protected Area

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Green turtle - AIGCFD

Green turtle - AIGCFD

Purpose of the Plan

The Plan describes what we want to achieve, how we plan to do it and who we need to help us. The plan is a legal document and decisions about the management and development of the MPA must pay regard to its objectives and principles. It is also a working document that we will use on a daily basis to guide our management of the MPA and inform the global community about what is being done to protect this internationally important site.

The Management Plan has been developed through consultation with people living on Ascension and our partners around the world. It will be reviewed every five years to ensure it is achieving the MPA’s aims.

Sea chub - Ness Smith
Sea chub - Ness Smith

How to use this Plan?

We have tried to make this plan as easy to navigate as possible. The questions below are designed to provide an entry into the main aspects of the plan. By following links within the pages it should be possible to see how those aspects are interconnected and why we have chosen the management actions we have. So if you are interested in our shallow water seamounts, click on what the MPA is protecting? to find a description of the habitats and species found there, and then follow the links to discover what threats they face and what actions we are taking to address those threats. Alternatively, you could go to the how we will manage the MPA section to see all the actions we are planning to undertake and use the filters to see which actions contribute to each MPA objective or protect a particular species or habitat.

There are many routes to take through this plan. We hope you enjoy exploring.

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The Management Plan will be reviewed following the initial 12 month implementation period. Once a finalised version is adopted, the plan will be reviewed every five years.


We would like to thank the Blue Belt Programme for funding the Ascension Island Government Conservation Marine Team on Ascension, who produced this plan.

The Blue Marine Foundation and RSPB have provided continued support for the Ascension MPA and the Blue Marine Foundation funded this online Management Plan.

This plan has built on the work of many scientists who have studied Ascension’s marine life. They are too numerous to list but we would like to make particular mention of previous members of the AIG Conservation Team: Jude Brown, Andy Richardson, Sam Weber, Nicola Weber, Kate Downes, Emma Nolan, Rob Mrowicki and Kate Chadwick for laying the foundation of this plan.

We would also like to thank the individuals and organisations who responded to the public consultation on an earlier draft of this document and provided comments that have strengthened the plan.

Alan Nicholls and Xander Halliwell kindly proof read earlier drafts of this document and greatly improved its accuracy.

The exceptionally talented Lucie Machin created the beautiful paintings and illustrations used throughout this plan and many people generously allowed us to use their stunning photographs.

Most of all, we would like to thank past and present members of the Ascension Island Council - Kitty George, Alan Nicholls, Sue Lawrence, Terry Young, Nicky John and Andrew Ellick - who have shown such vision and leadership to bring about the designation of the MPA.