Offshore West Africa

2017 à 2022
Environmental management of offshore activities in West Africa

Context and Key Issues

In recent years, offshore oil and gas activities in West Africa have been growing significantly and at a rapid pace. While they represent an economic development opportunity, poor management of such activities will lead to heavy environmental, social and economic impacts.


The project aims to improve the management of environmental risks related to the offshore oil and gas industry in West Africa. It will address the various challenges (environmental, social, and economic in particular) of the offshore extraction industry and contribute to the creation of an offshore community within the region.

All public and private actors concerned by the challenges of the offshore industry are thus invited to take part in the project, and to contribute to the reduction of environmental risks.


The project is organised around 4 main strategies:


  1. Strengthening scientific knowledge and environmental monitoring.
    >> Improving and sharing scientific data is essential for the management of environmental risks related to offshore activities; 
  2. Raising awareness and improving management capacities. >> The complexity of the extractive industry requires that stakeholders (national and regional administrations, NGOs, researchers, parliamentarian networks, etc.) be provided with the necessary tools to take part in the development and supervision of offshore activities. Awareness-raising initiatives will requireproactive engagement and reflection;
  3. Developing and reinforcing response plans in case of marine pollution due to oil spills.
    >> This strategy will ensure that quick and effective responses are available in case of oil pollution;

  4. Strengthening the regulation and supervision of offshore extraction activities.
    >> Special attention will be paid to both the legal supervision of the offshore industry (implementing the relevant international and regional agreements, developing national standards, etc.) and to fostering CSR

IDDRI is responsible for ensuring the overall coordination of the project and for implementing Strategy 4.

Actors and Funding

Financial partners

- MAVA Foundation for a period of six years

Research partners

- BirdLife International, coordinator of Strategy 1;

- The Regional Partnership for Coastal and Marine Conservation in West Africa (PRCM), coordinator of Strategy 2;

- The Abidjan Convention Secretariat, coordinator of Strategy 3;

- The Global Initiative for West, Central and Southern Africa (GI-WACAF);

- The Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI);

- Regional research institutes, NGOs and oil companies.