Environmental concerns must be integrated into the development process, but African countries still face many challenges as they work to achieve development that is economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable. Many countries have already launched National Environmental Action Plans (NEAPs) and National Conservation Strategies; however, in preparing and implementing them, economics was used sparingly because techniques and skills available to do so were in short supply. This paper was written to fill this gap, to show how environmental economics could and should be used to improve the quality of decision making in the NEAP process. The paper is written for the practitioner in the field who needs to make immediate decisions and cannot wait for more data. After presenting the theory of environmental economics, the text goes on to show its practical application in Africa.