Industrial Fishing Occupies a Third of the Planet
Using satellite data recently made public, conservationists may be able to manage the massive industry.
How do you study the world's more widespread predator? By spying from space.
When a team of researchers set out to see how prevalent industrial fishing was around the world—who was fishing where and when—they were met with a dearth of information.
They lacked access to vessel monitoring systems closely held by regional fishery managers, says Juan Mayorga, a marine data scientist from National Geographic's Pristine Seas project. And that information would have shown only pieces of the puzzle.
To circumvent this obstacle, Mayorga and a team of researchers took a step back—way back—and tracked marine vessels from space, using satellites to learn where industrial fishing vessels fished and when.
They found the footprint left by the industry was staggering.
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