Catapult wins technology award at inaugural Ocean Awards

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Stuart Martin, CEO, accepting our award

The Satellite Applications Catapult was last night named as one of the winners at the inaugural Blue Marine Foundation / Boat International Ocean Awards, for its “Project Eyes on the Seas” live satellite monitoring service. The project was developed in partnership with The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Created by the Blue Marine Foundation and Boat International, the new awards are designed to “celebrate individuals, companies, legislators and projects that have made an outstanding contribution to the health of the oceans.” The Catapult won the category for “new technology or application thereof that made the biggest contribution to ocean conservation in the past year”.

Stuart Martin, CEO of the Satellite Applications Catapult, said: “We’re delighted and honoured to have been recognised by such a distinguished panel of maritime experts with this prestigious new award. Project Eyes on the Seas is the result of a fantastic partnership with The Pew Charitable Trusts, providing a new tool to help eradicate the scourge of ‘pirate’ fishing around the world.

“Since launching a year ago, there has been worldwide interest in the system’s capabilities and the role that satellite data can play in safeguarding precious marine resources, including the world’s largest fully protected marine reserve – around the Pitcairn Islands in the South Pacific Ocean,” he added.

“Ensuring that all enforcement agencies have access to cost-effective technology that can identify, monitor, and track fishing vessel activity is an important step toward ending illegal fishing,” said Tony Long, director of the ending illegal fishing project at The Pew Charitable Trusts. “Project Eyes on the Seas offers all governments equal access to real-time comprehensive monitoring and analysis of all fishing vessels, including those that don’t openly share their positions.”

Blue Marine Foundation chairman, Charles Clover, who chaired the awards’ panel of judges, explained: “Our panel of judges – consisting of people devoted to ocean conservation – decided that the creation of Project Eyes on the Seas in January 2015 was outstanding. It was therefore fitting that the Catapult is recognised for its contribution to the health of the oceans.”

Blue Marine Foundation is the UK’s most dynamic marine conservation charity, and Boat International is the world’s leading superyacht media company.