Oil and gas company Woodside has formally lodged an application to carry out exploration drilling near the Rowley Shoals in the state's North West.
As part of a joint venture with Shell, the company wants to drill eight wells in the search for reserves of oil and gas.
Some of those wells would be 30 kilometres from the marine park.
Rowley Shoals lies 300 kilometres west of Broome and is made up of three coral atolls.
Tourism sites say some of the world's most spectacular diving and snorkelling can be experienced in the park which is also home to sharks, marlin and sailfish.
Environmental groups say the application poses a threat to the area.
WWF's Paul Gamblin says there is a real threat of spills from such activity.
"This is really part of a bigger picture really of the oi and gas sector advancing on these very fragile important places like the Rowley Shoals and like the Ningaloo coast, getting ever closer to the reefs themselves," he said.
He says the Government needs to do more to protect the environment.
"The Government could create wider fully protected areas, sort of buffers around places like the reefs which protect them and give the community confidence that oil and gas won't be able to get so close," he said.
"It's possible in the future that oil and gas could get within about five and half kilometres of the Rowley Shoals themselves which is far too close." Recently, BHP Billiton revealed plans to look for oil five kilometres from Ningaloo marine park.
The Federal Department of Environment is assessing the proposal to determine whether it will have a significant impact on the reef.
Woodside says it has a proven track record of offshore drilling off the coast of WA and is confident it has the capabilities and experience to safely manage the proposed drilling program.
The company says its plans will be assessed by the relevant environmental regulators before drilling commences.