Peru discloses national vessel tracking data with Global Fishing Watch

Published on
October 29, 2018

Global Fishing Watch (GFW), the partnership between Google and the advocacy groups Oceana and SkyTruth, now features national vessel tracking data public from Peru.

Peru’s commercial fishing vessels can now be viewed by anyone, in real-time, for free on GFW’s map platform. Approximately 1,300 vessels or more from Peru’s industrial fleets, which went previously undetected, are visible on the public mapping interface – for the country alone, “that is a ten-fold increase in the number of vessels that are now publicly trackable,” GFW said. 

Sharing vessel tracking data via GFW has helped to further along Peru’s national monitoring and control efforts, including combating illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing. The commitment made by Peru, which is the second-largest fishing nation in the world after China, also supports fisheries transparency on a global scale, GFW CEO Tony Long said.

“By bringing their vessel tracking data into the public realm, Peru has taken a significant step forward in making transparency in fisheries the norm rather than the exception,” Long said. “Peru will also be using our night-time imagery data to reveal brightly-lit fishing vessels operating at night. We commend Peru’s use of our map and data capabilities to enhance their existing systems and strengthen monitoring in their waters and the adjacent high seas.”

“We are heartened that our government will be among the first to take full advantage of Global Fishing Watch,” added Patricia Majluf, the vice president of Oceana Peru. “Increased transparency will help ensure Peruvians see the full benefits of our rich fisheries now, and in the future.”

The decision by Peru – which is home to one of the world’s largest single stock fisheries, the anchoveta – to share its data comes in advance of the fifth annual Our Ocean conference, taking place in Bali, Indonesia. It also follows in the Canadian government’s formal statement of support for the work of GFW at the G7 ministerial meeting in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, in early October. As part of its formal statement, Canada confirmed it would encourage better data-sharing and improved science, and invest up to CAD 11.6 million (USD 8.8 million, EUR 7.7 million) to combat IUU fishing.

“Transparency is crucial for good stewardship of our global ocean – to fight illegal fishing, to protect fish stocks and livelihoods, and to increase the safety and well-being of fishers,” Long said. “Global Fishing Watch is committed to bringing 20 countries into our Transparency Program by 2022 to advance responsible fisheries management. We urge other nations to follow the lead set by Indonesia, Peru and Canada.”

“We are entering the age of transparency and it is an empowering concept that can transform business as we know it, and that includes helping to manage fisheries sustainably so that we can save the oceans and feed the world,” Oceana Chief Policy Officer and GFW Co-Founder Jacqueline Savitz said.

Want seafood news sent to your inbox?