Lobster industry announces licence reduction plan

TC Media newsroom@journalpioneer.com
Published on July 24, 2014

Boats loaded down with lobster traps jam the harbour at Murray Harbour, P.E.I Wednesday April 30, 2014, which was the openig day of the lobster fishery on the Island's south shore.

©Guardian photo by Brian McInnis

SUMMERSIDE – There will be fewer lobster fishermen around the Island in the coming years, but those left in the industry will be in a more stable position.

That’s the goal and hoped for outcome of a new plan agreed on by Island lobster fishermen and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Fisheries Minister Gail Shea made the announcement in a late evening press release sent out Wednesday.

The plan allows for a lobster licence holders in fishing areas 24 and 26A-1 to buy-out another holder.

The buyer would have to retire up to half of the second licence’s traps but would still see an increase in how many they’d be allowed to fish.

Accord to DFO, this initiative builds on the Atlantic Lobster Sustainability Measures Program, which retired 244 licences here between 2009 and 2014.

Lobster fishing area 24 represents the northern portion of Prince Edward Island while area 26A-1 covers the eastern part of the Northumberland Strait bordering on both Nova Scotia and P.E.I.