The bottom trawler ’Kirkella’ operates in the Barents Sea off the east coast of Svalbard, located about 500nm (950km) north of Norway on July 7, 2016. Greenpeace says fishing is now taking place in areas further north than previously as ice retreats. The newly developed system can accurately track tens of thousands of commercial fishing vessels around the world. Photo:Greenpeace-Nick Cobbing

Tracking the world’s fishing fleet

Share

For the first time, fishing vessels world-wide can be tracked.

Researchers from Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia along with other institutions, have developed the new global fishing dataset.

Kristian Boerder (PhD candidate) at the Boris Worm Lab at Dalhousie is co-author of the study

Listen

The study was published in the journal Science under the title, “Tracking the global footprint of fisheries”  (abstract HERE)

Kristina Boerder (PhD student) Dalhousie University, N.S

The tracking shows that many vessels are in fact floating fishing factories, operating around the clock, over long distances and periods.

In creating the new database Dalhousie has partnered with Global Fishing Watch, the University of California, Stanford University, National Geographic Society, SkyTruth, and Google to produce the first ever dataset of global industrial fishing activities by using an unprecedented collection of satellite-sensed automatic identification system (AIS) positions. Some 70,000 industrial fishing vessels were tracked by computer and followed on a global map.

Fishing off the coast of Nova Scotia using the newly developed technology. The white and blue spots are fishing activity. The pink line indicates the tracked movement of a specific trawler (image altered to remove vessel ID) Image: Global Fishing Watch

The type of ship and the type of fishing can be identified as well as when it’s fishing and exactly where.

Boerder says they were surprised to see over half the worlds ocean surface was getting some measure of fishing activity, and adds that the figure is likely much higher as not all vessels were tracked.

A Chinese trawler fishing off the coast of West Africa: The new programme can track individual vessels to Photo: Pierre Gliezes for Greenpeace

She also noted that in general, protected marine areas and the 200 nm economic exclusion zones, were generally not being encroached upon.

The dataset developed by the researchers will be freely available to the public, which will allow anyone to download, visualize and analyze the global footprint of fishing.

Image showing areas of the oceans being fished by large commercial vessels. Image: Global Fishing Watch

Quoted in a press release, David Kroodsma, Lead Author and Director of Research and Development of Global Fishing Watch said, “By publishing the data and analysis, we aim to increase transparency in the commercial fishing industry and improve opportunities for sustainable management.” said

Additional information

Share
Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,
Posted in Economy, Environment, International, Internet, Science and Technology, Politics

Do you want to report an error or a typo? Click here!

@*@ Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

Note: By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that Radio Canada International has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Radio Canada International does not endorse any of the views posted. Your comments will be pre-moderated and published if they meet netiquette guidelines.

Netiquette »

When you express your personal opinion in an online forum, you must be as courteous as if you were speaking with someone face-to-face. Insults and personal attacks will not be tolerated. To disagree with an opinion, an idea or an event is one thing, but to show disrespect for other people is quite another. Great minds don’t always think alike—and that’s precisely what makes online dialogue so interesting and valuable.

Netiquette is the set of rules of conduct governing how you should behave when communicating via the Internet. Before you post a message to a blog or forum, it’s important to read and understand these rules. Otherwise, you may be banned from posting.

  1. RCInet.ca’s online forums are not anonymous. Users must register, and give their full name and place of residence, which are displayed alongside each of their comments. RCInet.ca reserves the right not to publish comments if there is any doubt as to the identity of their author.
  2. Assuming the identity of another person with intent to mislead or cause harm is a serious infraction that may result in the offender being banned.
  3. RCInet.ca’s online forums are open to everyone, without regard to age, ethnic origin, religion, gender or sexual orientation.
  4. Comments that are defamatory, hateful, racist, xenophobic, sexist, or that disparage an ethnic origin, religious affiliation or age group will not be published.
  5. In online speak, writing in ALL CAPS is considered yelling, and may be interpreted as aggressive behaviour, which is unpleasant for the people reading. Any message containing one or more words in all caps (except for initialisms and acronyms) will be rejected, as will any message containing one or more words in bold, italic or underlined characters.
  6. Use of vulgar, obscene or objectionable language is prohibited. Forums are public places and your comments could offend some users. People who use inappropriate language will be banned.
  7. Mutual respect is essential among users. Insulting, threatening or harassing another user is prohibited. You can express your disagreement with an idea without attacking anyone.
  8. Exchanging arguments and opposing views is a key component of healthy debate, but it should not turn into a dialogue or private discussion between two users who address each other without regard for the other participants. Messages of this type will not be posted.
  9. Radio Canada International publishes contents in five languages. The language used in the forums has to be the same as the contents we publish. The usage of other languages, with the exception of some words, is forbidden. Messages that are off-topic will not be published.
  10. Making repetitive posts disrupts the flow of discussions and will not be tolerated.
  11. Adding images or any other type of file to comments is forbidden. Including hyperlinks to other websites is allowed, as long as they comply with netiquette. Radio Canada International  is in no way responsible for the content of such sites, however.
  12. Copying and pasting text written by someone else, even if you credit the author, is unacceptable if that text makes up the majority of your comment.
  13. Posting any type of advertising or call to action, in any form, to Radio Canada International  forums is prohibited.
  14. All comments and other types of content are moderated before publication. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to refuse any comment for publication.
  15. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to close a forum at any time, without notice.
  16. Radio Canada International  reserves the right to amend this code of conduct (netiquette) at any time, without notice.
  17. By participating in its online forums, you allow Radio Canada International to publish your comments on the web for an indefinite time. This also implies that these messages will be indexed by Internet search engines.
  18. Radio Canada International has no obligation to remove your messages from the web if one day you request it. We invite you to carefully consider your comments and the consequences of their posting.

*

One comment on “Tracking the world’s fishing fleet
  1. Peter Ashcroft says:

    Utilising this data worldwide should curtail or prevent overfishing by factory fleets.
    All current and future fishing must be run in a sustainable manner, and in respect of each country’s allocation.