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How we are developing policies for the sustainable use of our seas.

First published:
25 October 2018
Last updated:

Welsh National Marine Plan

We published the first Welsh National Marine Plan on 12 November 2019. It sets out our policy for the next 20 years for the sustainable use of our seas.

Read the Welsh National Marine Plan

We have also published implementation guidance to be read alongside the Plan. This ensures the policies within the Plan are implemented effectively and consistently.

Read the Welsh National Marine Plan implementation guidance

Why plan

Under the Marine and Coastal Access Act (MCAA), we must produce a Marine Plan. Welsh Ministers are the planning authority for the Welsh:

  • inshore region (out to 12 nautical miles)
  • offshore region (12 to 200 nautical miles)

The Welsh National Marine Plan (WNMP) contains contain plans and policies which will:

  • support our vision for clean, healthy, safe and diverse seas
  • guide future sustainable development
  • support the growth of marine space and natural resources (’blue growth’)

We have published a report on progress with marine plans in Wales 2015 to 2021.

Implementing the plan

Public authorities must make decisions based on the policies in the Welsh National Marine Plan. The Marine Planning Decision Maker's Group help public authorities understand their role. We have also published Welsh National Marine Plan: frequently asked questions and Welsh National Marine Plan: stakeholder mapping report.  

To enable effective implementation of the WNMP we have produced a number of supporting documents: 

To understand more about the plan see:

In developing the plan, we have sought stakeholder input, in the following ways:


Having a sound evidence base will:

  • improve our knowledge of our seas
  • inform their sustainable use and management
  • enable effective marine planning

Our evidence base includes:

We will review and update the marine evidence report from time to time. This will give us an understanding of our seas.