Is your Marine Protected Area a member of the Global Ocean Refuge System?

Nominate marine protected areas (MPAs) for Global Ocean Refuge awards. Sites that demonstrate strong protections for biologically significant areas will earn Global Ocean Refuge status.

Preview the nomination questions

Nominate an MPA for a Global Ocean Refuge Award

The Global Ocean Refuge System is an initiative by Marine Conservation Institute designed to catalyze strong protection for at least 30% of the ecosystems in each marine biogeographic region of the world’s oceans, from the tropical seas to the polar oceans and from coastlines to the deepest trenches. By becoming a Global Ocean Refuge an MPA is recognized as providing strong protection that significantly contributes to marine biodiversity conservation and fosters resilience to climate change.

The Global Ocean Refuge System provides a substantial incentive for strong protection by publicly recognizing the outstanding conservation work of communities, managers, and NGOs safeguarding marine biodiversity with well-designed, strongly protected and effectively managed MPAs. From the smallest community conservation zone to the largest reserve, all implemented MPAs can be nominated to the Global Ocean Refuge System and join the movement to safeguard our seas and the life they contain.

After an MPA is nominated for a Global Ocean Refuge award, the our team produces an evaluation report that is shared on this website for expert comment prior to the award decision made by the Science Council. Our team works with Global Ocean Refuge managers, communities, visitors and investors to further promote and support these important areas.

The nomination survey will take approximately 30 minutes to complete, if you have already compiled the relevant documents. Refer to this list of nomination questions for a preview of the nomination questions. You may save your nomination form at any time and return to it later. Just click the "save & continue later" link at the very top of any nomination form page. Contact [email protected] if you have questions or feedback.

We ask you to submit the following documents, if available, with your nomination:

  • Descriptions of ecosystems, biodiversity, endangered and endemic species and oceanography (official descriptions, maps, monitoring reports, scientific papers, etc.)
  • All available geospatial data (MPA boundaries, regulatory zones, ecosystem distributions, etc.) as maps in image files or as GIS
  • Current MPA management plan and monitoring plan
  • Documentation of MPA regulations, enforcement plans, enforcement reports
  • Annual budget (if you have access to this)