"Economic development is believed critical to improving quality of life in the Innu communities of Sheshatshiu and Utshimassit, where substance abuse, low literacy rates, and living conditions far below national standards persist. The establishment of Innu Development Limited Partnership in 1998 was a decisive move by the Innu to generate business ventures. An impact benefit agreement associated with the Voisey Bay mine project and compensation from a land claim settlement will result in needed resources and business opportunities for the Innu.
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The Fisheries Conservation Group is a research group created at the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University in 1996, to develop an independent fisheries research and training program with a focus on the fisheries ecosystems of the Northwest Atlantic.
Community structure, function and distribution of northern coastal fishes in fjords and estuarine environments. Emphasis on sampling, field techniques, taxonomy, quantitative characterization, adaptations and habitat relationships. A comparative approach will contrast fish communities from deepwater, estuarine, near shore and freshwater habitats.
Dr. Joe Wroblewski and his graduate students are investigating local fisheries resources of the southeastern Labrador coast which are utilized by coastal communities, but which have not been scientifically documented. We are working with Labrador residents to study the ecology of these living marine resources. We have focused on bay cod and Icelandic scallop, specifically to understand the productivity of the wild stocks and the potential for aquaculture (Wroblewski et al., 1998).
Dr. Wroblewski has been conducting research on a new method of marine fish population restoration, termed "enhancement of reproductive potential" or ERP (Wroblewski, et al., 1996; Wroblewski, et al., 1999; Wroblewski and Hiscock, 2002). This entails trapping late juvenile and young adult fish from the wild, increasing their growth and fecundity by feeding them in sea pens, and then returning the fish to their natural habitat to spawn. Hatchery based enhancement programs have met with criticism regarding genetic changes in cultured populations, and the fitness of released fish.
The Atlantic cod of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland were once a major food source for Europeans and North Americans. France and Portugal began fishing the Grand Banks in the early 1500s, joined by England during the 1600s. Spain, the former Soviet Union, Poland and Canada harvested great quantities of cod with dragnet trawlers during the latter part of the 20th century. In 1992 the northern cod population finally succumbed to decades of overfishing and several years of recruitment failure (poor reproductive success), due to natural climate change in the marine environment.