A United States-built Coastal Surveillance System (CSS) will help increase capacity to monitor Palau’s seas and track vessel movements within its waters.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography Academic Program Management Officer Travis Schramek said that this is the first system of its kind that the US has built.
Schramek said that what makes the CSS in Palau unique among others is that it has integrated camera systems and radars into it which can be operated by the marine law enforcers. It also has the capacity to monitor vessel movements even at night time.
The CSS currently has two operational systems in the country which are installed in Angaur and Kayangel. Both systems can monitor areas of up to 25 miles.
Three more systems are also going to be built in Palau’s Southwest islands in the future, Schramek said, explaining further that one will be built in Sonsorol while two will be placed in Hatohobei.
These areas are specifically chosen since they are prone to illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing activities, Schramek said.
The CSS, according to Schramek, will help Palau’s marine law enforcers have better identification and utilization of their resources.
“Enforcement capacity is located here in Malakal so it is important to extend their capabilities to the southwest,” Schramek said.
Meanwhile, Justice Minister and Vice President Raynold Oilouch said that the CSS will benefit both the US and Palau.