Cumberland North MLA Elizabeth Smith-McCrossin is pleased clamming will be allowed again in areas along the Northumberland Strait.
Smith-McCrossin received notification last week that the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans had decided to reduce the closures in the Baie Verte (Amherst Shore, Lorneville area) area. The news comes following a public meeting last spring that was organized by the Progressive Conservative MLA.
“I want to congratulate local residents who made their voices heard on this issue,” Smith-McCrossin said. “Because of their persistence, a common-sense solution was finally found.”
Parts of the shoreline from Seagrove to Cameron Beach have been closed since the 1980s because of high fecal coliform counts. Regular testing by Environment Canada showed that not all clamming areas were contaminated, but they were closed anyway.
For many local residents, digging clams for personal use is a long-time tradition. At the community meeting last May, they expressed frustration that the entire area was closed, not just the areas that were contaminated.
“Along with local residents, I’ve been working on this issue for more than a year,” Smith-McCrossin said. “I am pleased the federal government has finally listened to residents and took steps to solve the problem.”