PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A group representing lobster, tourism, conservation and environmental interests reported Tuesday it is launching a campaign to raise public awareness about climate change it says is threatening Maine's lobster population. In a press conference on the Portland waterfront, lobster industry advocates said carbon pollution from power plants, cars and other sources is warming up and acidifying waters in the Gulf of Maine.
Warmer waters drive lobsters to migrate to colder waters and make them more susceptible to disease, while acidified waters hurt lobsters' ability to form adequate shells, the advocates said.
Emmie Theberge of the Natural Resources Council of Maine said people should support any federal action that will reduce carbon pollution.
"The fact that carbon pollution hurts Maine lobsters should be a concern to all Mainers," she said.
Lobster is Maine's most valuable fishery by far. Last year, Maine lobstermen caught a record 126 million pounds valued at $339 million to fishermen.