Press Release: OPT/NET granted ESA funding to tackle illegal fishing!

Published in
2 min readJul 1, 2020

Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) depletes fish stocks, destroys marine habitats, distorts competition, puts honest fishers at an unfair disadvantage, and weakens coastal communities, particularly in developing countries. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), illegal fishing has caused losses estimated at US$23 billion per year. The EU is working diligently to close the loopholes that allow illegal operators to profit from their activities.

At the same time, the European Space Agency has identified that space technology (EOD & GNSS) can drastically increase the efficiency at which such crimes can be detected and prevented. To this effect, we are proud to announce that OPT/NET has been granted funding for a feasibility study “Environmental Crimes — Detection and Prevention of Illegal Fishing”, which will allow us to study how space technology can be applied to prevent illegal fishing and address the challenges limiting the effectiveness of current approaches.

We are excited to explore how our innovative AI approach can be used to effectively address this pertinent global issue, and look forward to furthering our goal of expanding our AI-as-a-Service model to even more new and valuable use cases.

For more information on how we leverage the combined power of Artificial Intelligence and Satellite Imagery, click here.