The authorization data is retrieved from public sources regarding both current and historic registration of vessels to the five main tuna regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) :
- Commission for the Conservation of Southern Bluefin Tuna (CCSBT)
- Inter-American-Tropical-Tuna Commission (IATTC)
- International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT)
- Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC)
- Western Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC)
If a vessel is on a registry record during an identified encounter event, the event is considered ‘authorized’. A ‘partial’ authorization indicates the vessel participating in an encounter has matching authorizations from at least one tuna RFMO where there is an overlap in RFMO jurisdiction. An ‘unknown’ authorization occurs when the vessel participating in the encounter has no identified matching authorizations for that region during the time of the encounter.
The public RFMO registry sources vary in structure, information provided, and how often the record information is updated. It is possible that historical record information may change over time. In addition to these sources, the vessel authorization information is dependent on the completeness of the AIS data the records are merged with. It is, therefore, the responsibility of the user to make their own interpretation and decisions about the information found.
Detailed information about how authorization data is identified can be found here.