Screenshot 2020-03-10 at 13.58.21

Dark Targets. WIRED UK.

Screenshot 2020-03-10 at 13.58.21When trawlers turn off their transponders, they “go dark”, allowing them to hide illicit activity such as illegal fishing and modern slavery. Now, a team of ocean experts is using satellite data to light them back up.

One Wednesday in March, 2019, a small group of ocean experts gathered in a conference room in Panama City’s Waldorf Astoria, ready to take the stage. Outside, the weather was hot and muggy and the streets dirty with rubble from nearby roadworks. Inside the cool, marbled interior of one of the city’s glitziest hotels, government officials from Panama, Ecuador, Colombia and Costa Rica sat on cream chairs in neat rows, listening intently. First came the usual formalities: welcome addresses and statements of intentions to collaborate. About halfway through the morning’s proceedings, it was Bjorn Bergman’s turn….

Read the full article in WIRED UK’s September 2019 issue.


Olive Heffernan

Olive Heffernan is a London-based freelance environment writer. Olive mostly writes about climate change and its impacts, but also writes more broadly on sustainable resource use. Here you can find an archive of her recent articles, link to her Twitter feed and her blog.

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