A typical coastal management plan considers the coastal morphology, climate geology and soils; natural resources; coastal erosion and accretion; trophic status; ornithological importance; fish and fisheries; vegetation; wetlands, dunes and other areas of conservation importance, institutional considerations, such as land tenure, land use, legal and policy areas; archaeological and ethnographic significance; provision of buffer zones, and resources needed and means of assistance in implementing management guidelines.
A master plan or integrated coastal area management (ICAM) plan for the conservation, management and development of tidelands is the most suitable approach to evaluate present actions and plans and direct future developments. An ICAM process starts with a concept paper and evolves through a number of steps that lead to the definition, by all sectors, of an ICAM strategy. The strategy will, in turn, guide the development of either a common integrated plan or expanded sectoral plans.
UNESCO's programme includes the following: pursuing regional cooperation in marine science and coastal area management.