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Why Global Fishing Watch?

Our World Depends on Sustainable Fisheries

  • Over 3 billion people depend on seafood for 20% of the protein in their diets.
  • Almost 90% of the world’s fish stocks are fished to capacity or overfished.
  • The global economy loses $83 billion annually to illegal fishing, overfishing, and poor fisheries management.

Global Fishing Watch is putting an end to patchy surveillance and poor enforcement by pushing for greater transparency and a better understanding of where fishing is occuring.

We Have a Limited View of Fishing Activity at Sea

  • Fishing occurs over the horizon and out of sight and current monitoring and surveillance schemes are not sufficient or effective.
  • Data on fishing vessels is limited, inconsistent, and typically not independently verifiable.
  • Processing raw data to make it useful for research is challenging and costly.

Global Fishing Watch provides the global footprint of commercial fishing and supporting data for free to the public and also provides a platform for better monitoring control and enforcement.

Global Fishing Watch Advances Sustainability Through Transparency

  • We reveal the location and behaviors of commercial fishing fleets everywhere on the oceans through our freely accessible fishing activity map and processed data sets.
  • Our transparency platform accelerates scientific research and development of innovations that support improved sustainability.
  • Partnerships amplify our impact on fisheries policy & compliance, seafood sourcing, and ocean conservation.

Global Fishing Watch will continue to develop its volume of information and data sources to ensure we achieve the best possible visualization of global fishing activity.

News and updates …

Close encounters of the fishy kind

New data reveals suspected vessel rendezvous at sea and sheds light on the ‘dark’ fleet To mark World Oceans Day, Global Fishing Watch (GFW) has increased ocean transparency by releasing [...]

Identification of ‘dark vessels’

Using bright lights to reveal the 'dark' fleet Christopher Elvidge with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)’s Earth Observation Group writes about matching night-time imagery with monitoring data [...]

Satellite tracking shows the economics of much high seas fishing does not add up

Kristina M. Gjerde, Senior High Seas Advisor. IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme As the countdown continues to September’s historic first round of United Nations treaty talks on [...]

Data sharing key to building the transparency needed to assess and respond to ocean risk

Global Fishing Watch discusses the use of technology at the first ever Ocean Risk Summit, Bermuda 8-10th May Tony Long, Global Fishing Watch I was very pleased to [...]

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Track commercial fishing activity worldwide
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Fishing Watch map.