Combatting illegal fishing with satellites
Imagery suppliers DigitalGlobe and global maritime data experts exactEarth have announced a strategic alliance to offer joint services to the commercial fishing industry and to aid in combating illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing.
IUU fishing is currently recognised as a major threat to achieving sustainable fisheries, with the potential to cause an irreversible change in ocean ecosystems. Several decades of overfishing in the world’s major fisheries has created large declines in commercially important fish populations.
The alliance will see exactEarth’s advanced automatic identification system (AIS) maritime information services integrated with DigitalGlobe’s high-accuracy, high-resolution commercial satellite imagery. Both organisations’ big data and predictive analytics capabilities will be used in order to help governments to address IUU fishing and also their broader maritime surveillance.
“26 million tonnes of fish, representing approximately $23 billion in lost revenue, are taken each year through illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing,” said Peter Mabson, CEO of exactEarth. “This has created a compelling case for governments and commercial organisation to find a solution to stem their IUU losses.”
“With DigitalGlobe we believe we have the solution required and we will be first-to-market with a satellite-based AIS system to solve this problem. Our Alliance will enable governments and commercial organisations to monitor fishing activity in and around their borders, respond to suspicious activity and hold vessels accountable for their catch.”
Tony Frazier, SVP & GM of Services for DigitalGlobe says that the partnership represents the first commercial solution to combat illegal fishing: “Illegal fishing costs countries billions of dollars each year and impacts livelihoods of millions,” he said.
“The Alliance will enable our customers to receive AIS data covering a broader territory, which in turn will help them to enhance their overall maritime governance decisions and increase transparency for our changing planet.”
Written by Anthony Wallace
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