Project ReCon, a pioneer and unique circular economy program aiming to give a second life to echosounder buoys used in tropical purse seine tuna fishing, is celebrating its first anniversary.
In just one year since its launch in December 2022 hand in hand with the NGO Tangaroa Blue Foundation, the Satlink-driven project has become one of the most important initiatives worldwide in its field, with the participation of over 100 vessels and 22 tuna fishing companies worldwide.
After taking its first steps in Australia with Satlink’s founding partner Tangaroa Blue Foundation through the Australian Marine Debris Initiative (AMDI), Project ReCon has also gained the support of two other major environmental organizations, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and The Pacific Community (SPC), as local partners.
The project has since extended its reach to a total of eight countries, allowing it to be present in the major oceans where tropical tuna fishing occurs.
This international collaboration network, that is paving the way for the future of fisheries sustainability, aims to recover, recondition, and reuse echosounder buoys used by the tropical purse seine fishing fleet.
As a result of its achievements, Project ReCon received the prestigious Tuna Awards 2023 last September, hosted by the Anfaco-Cecopesca association and the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food.
The award recognized the unique nature of Project ReCon and its contribution to the sustainability of the fishing industry.
This award reinforces Satlink’s strategy and commitment to ensuring the comprehensive sustainability of fishing activities, and adds to recent recognitions: United Nations (UN) Global Compact recognized Satlink’s technology in 2022 for its contribution to ocean and marine life conservation, awarding it the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 prize.
This recognition was followed in 2023 by the European Union Technology Chamber’s award.
A cornerstone of Project ReCon is its industry-wide support and involvement. Currently, more than 100 vessels from 22 companies and organizations such as Albacora, Echebastar, Inpesca, OPAGAC/AGAC, Sapmer, Bolton Food Group, Cape Fisheries, Caroline Fisheries Corporation, Trimarine, Oakcity Tuna Fishing Corporation, Hartswater, and the entire US Pacific Tuna Group, among many others, are participating in the project.
Kathryn Gavira, Satlink’s Head of Science and Sustainability, said; “Project ReCon not only helps prevent these devices from becoming technological waste due to ocean currents or adverse weather conditions, but also reconditions them for scientific and environmental purposes, such as marking and monitoring marine debris, scientific research, or prevention of natural disasters.
“Since its inception, over 4 tons of ghost nets have been collected thanks to ReCon buoys.”