The Ecuadorian government is using Canadian technology to monitor the Chinese fleet’s illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing around the Galápagos Islands. In early June 2022, the government detected 180 Chinese vessels near the islands’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ), fishing for large Humboldt squid and threatening the region’s biodiversity and economy.
The Ecuadorian Navy patrols to prevent illicit fishing in the protected zone. “As long as these vessels are far from the insular EEZ, more than 100 miles [more than 160 kilometers] away, we monitor them by satellite,” Ecuadorian Navy Rear Adm. John Merlo León, commander of naval operations, told Ecuadorian television network Teleamazonas.
Reportedly, Ecuador uses both space technology company MDA, based in Brampton, Ontario, to provice satellite tracking, remote sensing and the ability to synthesize large amounts of data and Global Fishing Watch, a Google-backed website that tracks commercial fishing and interprets vessel movements, including fishing in prohibited areas.