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Electronic Monitoring in Indian Ocean Tuna Fisheries 

A report, “Minimum standards for designing and implementing Electronic Monitoring systems in Indian Ocean tuna fisheries,” co-authored by scientists from ISSF, AZTI-Tecnalia and the Indian Ocean Tuna Commission (IOTC), was presented to the IOTC Scientific Committee as an important step in accelerating the use of electronic monitoring systems across Indian Ocean tuna fisheries. The paper seeks to help electronic monitoring systems (EMS) “be fully accepted as a data collection mechanism that provides independent observations of a scientific nature,” said report co-author Fabio Fiorellato, IOTC Data Coordinator.

Electronic monitoring (EM) through the use of cameras and other sensors is a proven technology that has been increasingly employed for various purposes on fishing vessels, primarily in industrial fleets. Electronic monitoring systems (EMS) include equipment that tracks a vessel’s position and activity, together with cameras that record key aspects of the fishing operations. 

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Featured Infographic

An infographic shows how purse-seine tuna vessels should configure and operate their electronic monitoring systems (EMS). Based on the ISSF report Minimum Standards for Electronic Monitoring in Tropical Tuna Purse Seine Fisheries, it indicates which features and processes should be in place before, during, and after the fishing trip. 

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ISSF Conservation Measure on Electronic Monitoring

ISSF Conservation Measure 4.3(a) – Observer Coverage for ISSF participating companies requires that companies conduct transactions only with those large-scale purse seine vessels that have 100% observer coverage (human or electronic) on every fishing trip and observing every fishing operation. 

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In the Update to ISSF Conservation Measures & Commitments Compliance Report published in November 2020, 25 of 25 companies were fully compliant with Conservation Measure 4.3(a) – Observer Coverage.

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ISSF in the News 

ISSF challenges tuna fisheries to progress on sustainability despite pandemic

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About the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF)

The International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF) is a global coalition of scientists, the tuna industry and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) — the world’s leading conservation organization — promoting science-based initiatives for the long-term conservation and sustainable use of tuna stocks, reducing bycatch and promoting ecosystem health. Helping global tuna fisheries meet sustainability criteria to achieve the Marine Stewardship Council certification standard — without conditions — is ISSF's ultimate objective. To learn more, visit iss-foundation.org, and follow ISSF on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and LinkedIn.