Today the C-NLOPB opened their call for bids for new oil and gas exploration areas in the waters off our province. The areas available for bids include recently announced marine refuge areas that are closed to fishing activity.
“Any closures intended to focus on marine conservation must restrict all other marine industrial activities. We cannot ask fish harvesters to accept the closure of an area to fishing activity in the name of conservation while continuing to allow oil and gas exploration in that same area,” said FFAW-Unifor President Keith Sullivan.
“Oil and gas and seismic activity will continue unrestricted in these areas, calling into question whether the marine refuges will truly achieve their conservation goals,” said Sullivan. “These closures have shut harvesters out while letting oil and gas in.”
In addition to the marine refuge closures, new areas open to oil and gas exploration include valuable fishing grounds that will significantly affect fish harvesters’ enterprises. It is essential that harvesters be consulted prior to the bid process commencing.
“It is time for the government to stand up for the people of our province who depend on the valuable and sustainable fisheries resources off our shore,” concluded Sullivan.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Courtney Glode, FFAW Communications