Smart Technology Being Used to Solve Commercial Fishing Issues

by Madison Miller

Maybe financial stocks aren’t the only kind of stocks facing a gradual downward pattern. In our different bodies of water, researchers are finding that fish stocks are decreasing. This means that in the last few decades over-fishing is causing a decrease in valuable fish populations.

In fact, according to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, 34% of global fish stocks were overfished in 2017. This is no surprise as about 179 million tons of fish have flopped on our plates globally in 2018.

Creating New Fishing Tech

So how can people solve the problem of over-fishing?

Smart technology can help solve the problem of over-fishing as well as illegal catching.

According to CNN, a project in Norway called SmartFish H2020 is hoping to create technology that can be used on fishing boats in the future.

Right now, they are experimenting with three main tech features to help stimulate and solve the problem. The first is an indoor pool that stimulates an ocean basin. The second is lasers to analyze fish stocks. The last is 3D visual tools to analyze the fish bed.

This will mean that “CatchScanner” would be put on the boat that scans different fish to analyze both weight and species. It also means “SmartGear” nets that attract only the right kind of fish using LED lights.

According to the CNN video, it will allow us to know exactly how much fish we are catching and begin to make changes. That is if the tools can be put on boats. The number one goal for the UN-funded-project is to eventually have widespread use of their technology on boats.

However, there has to be something in it for fishers to use and learn such expensive technology.

“Fisherman Aitor Larrañaga will soon test the SmartGear trawl net off the coast of Spain, with his company Larrasmendi Bi. He’s enthusiastic about smart tech and believes the fishing industry needs to innovate to become more sustainable,” according to CNN.

Why is it So Important?

While to some overfishing may not seem like a serious problem, it can wreak havoc on the oceans.

According to World Wildlife, overfishing is connected to bycatch, which is accidentally catching other sea life. This can include anything from sea turtles to cetaceans.

The threat is serious, as many people around the world rely on seafood as a main source of food. With continual issues in fishing the oceans can face long-lasting problems.

According to Greenpeace, there are few protections for marine life. There is only two percent of oceans set aside for marine reserves. Pollution and overfishing happen just about everywhere else. Without changes, “we face creating irreversible damage and the collapse of some of the most important food sources in the world.”