Only 25 percent of the world’s seafood and fish populations have been deemed healthy. That’s a staggering statistic, and the root cause is overfishing. Google, Sky Truth, and Oceana have just announced their collaboration in creating a map of illegal and irresponsible fishing, paving the way for a more sustainable ocean environment. Together, the team has created Global Fishing Watch: a tool that allows anyone to observe the global fishing fleet in real time. Ordinary citizens will be able to watch commercial fishing and target (and report) illegal fishing activities.
“Global Fishing Watch is designed to empower all stakeholders, including governments, fishery managers, citizens, and members of the fishing industry itself, so that together they may work to bring back a healthy, bio-diverse, and maximally productive ocean,” said Andrew Sharpless, CEO of Oceana. “Global Fishing Watch will help bring back the world’s fisheries, protecting and enhancing the livelihoods of the hundreds of millions of people who depend on ocean fisheries for food and income.”
The platform works using technology known as AIS (Automatic Identification System), which tags all sea vessels. The Global Fishing Watch will take that data and only map fishing vessels to give users an unprecedented view of what exactly is going on in the world’s waters.
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Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @JoannaFantozzi