Integrated Management Planning

Placentia Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador

Introduction

Placentia Bay lies on a north-northeast axis, opening to the Atlantic Ocean at the southwest. It separates the Avalon Peninsula on the east from the Burin Peninsula on the west and is large, deep and ice-free, which allows year-round shipping in and out of the bay.

Placentia Bay provides habitat for many species of marine plants, fish, mammals and birds. Historically, valuable fisheries in the area supported communities on the coastline and islands of the bay. Today, Placentia Bay has 26 incorporated and 30 unincorporated communities, and another 10 smaller settlements that have an average population of approximately 40 people. Census totals for 1991 and 1996 were 30,562 and 28,817 people respectively.Footnote 11 By 2001, population had decreased to approximately 25,000 people.

Placentia Bay is an area of expanding marine transportation and coastal development. With the growth of the oil and gas industry in Newfoundland and Labrador, Placentia Bay is the largest oil handling port in Canada.Footnote 2

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