February 10, 2016  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Sunday, February 07, 2016 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news and events. I have posted summaries and links to 40,000 news articles and announcements. I also post breaking stories and exclusives. Be sure to check not only today's news, but take a look at the headlines from the past several days as well. Articles often come to my attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, RESTORE: The North Woods
Turning Back photo exhibit
Announcement - Sunday, February 07, 2016 

‘Turning Back’ examines, through photography, the loss of the wild and mankind’s role. Robert Adams looks at the landscape not as a heroic notion of American greatness, but as a place of loss and shame, and, at times, hope. At Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, through June 5. Gallery talk by Curator Gary Green Feb 11.
The Maine Frontier: Through the Lens of Isaac Walton Simpson, Feb 12
Event - Posted - Friday, February 05, 2016 

This multimedia presentation combines the rare and historic photography of Isaac Simpson with archived films, oral histories, and live music by Sumner McKane and Joshua Robbins. At Frontier, Brunswick, Feb 12, 8 pm.
Help wanted: Summer Camp Environmental Educators
Announcement - Friday, February 05, 2016 

Seasonal camp educators will develop and teach natural history activities to summer day campers at Gilsland Farm Audubon Center’s 62-acre sanctuary in Falmouth.
Great Maine Outdoor Weekend, Feb 12-14
Event - Posted - Friday, February 05, 2016 

Events all over the Great State of Maine.
A New National Park for Maine, Feb 11
Event - Posted - Thursday, February 04, 2016 

Ryan Parker will explain Elliotsville Plantation, Inc.’s proposal to create a National Park and National Recreation Area east of Baxter State Park. At First Universalist Church, Pittsfield, February 11, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Natural Resources Council of Maine.
Eye of Newt and Lizard’s Leg, Feb 10
Event - Posted - Wednesday, February 03, 2016 

Tropical ecologist Marty Crump will discuss our perceptions of amphibians and reptiles. At Colby College, Waterville, Olin Science Center, Feb 10, 7 pm.
Feeding Maine: Growing Access to Good Food, Feb 10
Event - Posted - Wednesday, February 03, 2016 

A traveling photo exhibit with Brendan Bullock’s photos with captions by Annie Murphy, which documents some of the people working to grow a resilient food system that serves all Mainers. At Frontier, Brunswick, through Feb 29. Maine Farmland Trust and Good Shepherd Food Bank will host a community discussion Feb 10, 6 pm.
Invasive Forest Pest Workshops
Event - Posted - Tuesday, February 02, 2016 

Invasive Forest Pest Workshops are being offered in spring and summer 2016 by Maine Association of Conservation Districts to help landowners and users, landscape and forest professionals, and all residents of the state to (1) identify current and potential invasive forest pests and their host species, (2) understand the threats to our forests and woodlands posed by these pests, and (3) learn how to report suspected pest sightings or damage to trees that may be a result of pest infestations.
Maine Youth Wilderness Leadership Program
Announcement - Monday, February 01, 2016 

Friends of Baxter State Park invites current Maine high school sophomores and juniors to apply to participate in the 2016 Maine Youth Wilderness Leadership Program, which includes a nine-day wilderness experience in Baxter State Park, August 6-14. Application deadline is February 8.
Power, Trash and Bates Mill, Feb 8
Event - Posted - Monday, February 01, 2016 

Presentation of community-engaged research by Environmental Studies students. At Bates College, Lewiston, Commons 221/222, Feb 8, 12-1 pm.
In The Blood, Feb 5
Event - Posted - Friday, January 29, 2016 

By combining archived films, photographs, oral histories told by the men themselves, and live music by Sumner McKane and Joshua Robbins, "In The Blood" brings the Maine lumberman’s 19th century reality to life. At Frontier, Brunswick, Feb 5, 8 pm.
Where does seafood come from? Feb 4
Event - Posted - Thursday, January 28, 2016 

Ed Robinson will talk about how seafood is harvested and produced. At Orr's Island Library, Harpswell, Feb 4, 7 pm.
Acadians of the St. John Valley, Feb 4 & 6
Announcement - Thursday, January 28, 2016 

Maine Public television will broadcast an hour­long documentary, “Acadians of the St. John Valley,” for the first time on Feb 4 and 6 to all of Maine and the Maritimes.
Local Food, Local Hunger, Feb 3
Event - Posted - Wednesday, January 27, 2016 

Greta Huff of Wiscasset's Morris Farm will address: What is food insecurity? How does it affect the people of Maine? How can we get rid of food insecurity in Maine? At Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Thorne Hall, Hutchinson Room, Feb 3, 6:30 pm
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News Items
Supreme Court puts a hold on Obama plan to limit carbon emissions
Associated Press - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

A divided Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to halt enforcement of President Barack Obama’s sweeping plan to address climate change until after legal challenges are resolved. The surprising move is a blow to the administration and a victory for the coalition of 27 mostly Republican-led states and industry opponents that call the regulations “an unprecedented power grab.” The high court’s four liberal justices said Tuesday they would have denied the request for delay.
Madison Paper production schedule could change weekly, president says
Morning Sentinel - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

The president and CEO of Madison Paper Industries said Tuesday he can’t confirm the details of a potential months-long curtailment at the paper mill, saying only that while production at the mill is down, the situation is changing on a weekly basis and layoffs have been avoided. Meanwhile, the president of the union representing employees at the mill said schedule changes enacted after the curtailment are frustrating workers with less pay.
Authorities Advise People to Stay Away From Seal Pups
Maine Public Broadcasting Network - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

Federal fisheries regulators are reminding people to stay away from gray seal pups they might see this time of year on islands and shorelines in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts. December through February is birthing time for the region's gray seals. Just because a pup is alone, Goebel says, doesn't mean that it's been abandoned. "Usually what's happening is the mother gray seal has gone off foraging and she's left her pup there and she thinks it's safe."
Editorial: William Beardsley not qualified to be Maine Education Commissioner
Maine Environmental News - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

On Tuesday, February 9, Governor Paul LePage temporarily withdrew the nomination of Dr. William “Bill” Beardsley to serve as Commissioner of the Maine Department of Education. Beardsley has gotten heat for his views on transgender issues as well as his involvement in a controversy surrounding the suicide of the late Rev. Robert Carlson. However, there are many other concerns about his previous management of the Dept of Conservation and his long list of extreme positions. William Beardsley has demonstrated by his statements and actions that he is not qualified to hold the office of Maine Education Commissioner.
Opinion: Don’t trash PERC until you compare proposals for your trash
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

The Fiberight plant doesn’t get built or its new technology doesn’t work, you don’t get your money back. The PERC plant has operated for 28 years and has at least another 20 years left. The other companies we are working with all have successful operations in Maine, and none of us is asking your town to subsidize our operations or be our safety net. Moreover, the technology PERC uses is essentially the same as that used in 85 other waste-to-energy plants operating successfully throughout the United States. No one else anywhere in North America is using the Fiberight technology. Make sure your town compares the options and carefully reviews the agreements it is being asked to sign. We are confident you will see that PERC works and that staying with us is the best, safest and most cost-effective way for your town to meet its future waste disposal needs. ~ Bob Knudse, USA Energy Group LLC, majority owner and managing partner of the Penobscot Energy Recovery Company (PERC) waste-to-energy facility in Orrington
Rand Wentworth passes Land Trust Alliance baton to Andrew Bowman
Other - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

On my last day as president of the Land Trust Alliance, I want to thank you all for your friendship and support over the past 14 years. It has been an honor to serve a community of such dedicated leaders, and I have watched with pride as you have increased the professionalism and the impact of land conservation all over the country. Starting tomorrow, Andrew Bowman will become the new president of the Land Trust Alliance. I've known Andrew for 11 years and I have great respect for his deep experience in conservation, his intellectual strength and his personal warmth. With his leadership and your good work, I am confident that the land trust community will flourish in the years ahead. ~ Rand Wentworth, President, Land Trust Alliance
LePage withdraws his nominee for education commissioner
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

Gov. Paul LePage is temporarily withdrawing his nominee for education commissioner, saying Tuesday that lawmakers on the Legislature’s Education Committee planned to reject Bill Beardsley for “unrelated” political reasons. LePage said he would re-nominate Beardsley “once Democrats put aside their childish and immature political games.” Beardsley, a former Maine conservation commissioner and president of Husson University, was named acting DOE commissioner in October 2015.
Conservationists donate funds to complete Penobscot River restoration
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

An infusion of $650,000 from the Nature Conservancy and the Atlantic Salmon Federation will help finish what has been called the “largest river restoration project in the country,” officials said Tuesday. The Penobscot River Restoration Trust is using the money to clear debris from its $3.2 million fish bypass and the town-owned former Howland tannery site. The work began last week. Once that work is finished, the historic $63.5 million restoration of the river will be complete. The project is expected to deliver large-scale ecological, cultural, recreational and economic benefits throughout New England’s second largest watershed and has already begun to restore the river’s sea-run fish.
Proposed changes in lobster fishing licenses up for a hearing on Wednesday
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

A bill that attempts to add more consistency to Maine’s lobster licensing rules, which have led to years-long waiting lists, gets a public hearing on Wednesday before the Legislature’s Marine Resources Committee in Augusta. The current system, which is decades old, limits the number of people who can fish for lobsters as a way to keep the resource healthy. As of November 2015, 293 names were on waiting lists for licenses, some since 2005. The proposed law would create a new, limited lobster and crab fishing license for a reduced number of traps, increase the age from 18 to 23 before someone who has gone through the industry’s apprenticeship program is put on a waiting list, and remove special fees for applicants age 70 or older, among other things. More than 5,800 commercial lobster licenses were held in 2014.
Tariff order on Maine-linked Canadian paper makers under federal review
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

The Commerce Department is reviewing a December order that imposed tariffs on two Canadian paper companies with substantial operations in Maine. The department will revisit the 18.85 percent countervailing duties on supercalendered paper produced in Canada by Irving Pulp and Paper and Catalyst Paper. Tariffs were imposed on both after the Commerce Department ruled that Canadian supercalendered paper producers were given unfair subsidies by the Canadian government. However, the tariffs on Irving and Catalyst were based on an investigation into the government help provided to Port Hawkesbury Paper. Maine Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins, who welcomed the duties of more than 20 percent imposed on Port Hawkesbury Paper, said the duties on Irving and Catalyst paper were “arbitrary and unfair” because the Commerce Department had not conducted a separate investigation into whether those two companies were subsidized by the Canadian government.
Obama sends Congress record $4.1 trillion 2017 spending plan
Associated Press - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

President Barack Obama sent Congress his eighth and final budget on Tuesday, proposing to spend a record $4.1 trillion on a number of initiatives, including to combating global warming. The new spending plan, for the budget year that begins Oct. 1 – just 31/2 months before he leaves office, is facing heavy fire from Republicans who hope to capture the White House. The proposal has dim prospects of winning approval in a GOP-controlled Congress.
Got a favorite outdoor place that needs protection? Speak up!
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

Maine’s Soil and Water Conservation Districts, along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, is looking for our input on natural resources concerns, with a goal of helping Conservation Districts to assist landowners and municipalities in protecting its most valuable land and water assets. And they’re asking for our help through a survey and public meetings. You may win a prize for completing the survey, but the biggest prize of all would be the protection of our very best lands and waters. You can get the survey from your local Soil & Water Conservation District, or complete it online. You have until the end of March to do so.
Letter: Gov. LePage is wrong to think public lands are for elitists
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

Gov. LePage’s assertion that Land for Maine’s Future is corrupt is as ridiculous as his oft-repeated claim that the public lands are for elitists. That makes me (a clamdigger/public school teacher) and my hunting partners over the years (a lobsterman, a clam buyer and a government worker) elitists. I’m sure thousands of other hunters, snowmobilers, ATVers, fishermen, etc., don’t consider themselves elitists either. Our governor is an embarrassment to true Mainers – and this is written by a decades-long tea partier! ~ Pete Hope, Pemaquid
Letter: Implement Maine lead rules soon to protect children’s future
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

We agree wholeheartedly that the Legislature did the right thing last June by lowering the acceptable threshold of lead to be in line with federal standards. Maine’s most vulnerable families have enough to worry about without their children being poisoned by lead in their homes – and they shouldn’t have to wait another day to be safe. ~ Tony Cipollone, CEO, John T. Gorman Foundation, Portland
Letter: Poking skunks
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, February 09, 2016 

In a Jan. 26 OpEd, Glen Koehler noted that disturbing the climate has been compared to poking an angry dragon. My dog Watson recently had a really close encounter with a skunk. Beyond the stun of the strong odor, I am haunted by the fact that this happened on Jan. 25 when skunks typically are hibernating. We are poking dragons, skunks, birds and fish; what other reminders do we need to awaken ourselves. Please join our Citizen’s Climate Lobby and work with us in support of our revenue neutral carbon fee and dividend proposal. ~ Lyndy Rohman, Bangor
U.N. panel offers plan for airplane emissions
Associated Press - Monday, February 08, 2016 

A U.N. panel on Monday proposed long-sought greenhouse gas emissions standards for airliners and cargo planes, drawing praise from the White House and criticism from environmentalists who said they would be too weak to actually slow global warming.
Saddleback Mountain won’t open for skiing in time for February school vacation
Morning Sentinel - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Officials at Saddleback Mountain near Rangeley said Monday the ski resort would not open in time for the traditional February school vacation week, plunging the future of the mountain into further uncertainty and raising fresh concerns among pass-holders and local business owners. The ski resort had been slated to open under new ownership by the end of January, but the sale of the mountain has delayed its opening day and the prospective buyer has not been identified. The company made the announcement that it would not open for the week of Feb.14 on its Facebook page Monday afternoon without offering a specific reason.
Feds award Maine $640,000 to boost rural economy
Bangor Daily News - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Two Maine organizations will share $640,000 in federal grant money designed to help support entrepreneurs in rural areas and to explore ways to get investor money to early-stage natural resource businesses. The Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development won a $390,000 grant to expand its entrepreneurship training programs, and Coastal Enterprises Inc. landed $250,000 to pursue a seed capital investment program that would cater to natural resource-based businesses in rural Maine.
In a written State of the State, LePage reveals his muddled State of Mind
Maine Environmental News - Monday, February 08, 2016 

In a letter filled with hyperventilating exaggerations and saturated with false statements, on Monday Maine Gov. Paul LePage delivered a written State of the State address that blames “socialist” lawmakers for blocking his extremist policy agenda. Much of the letter deals with LePage's discredited ideas on so-called welfare and tax reform, student debt and the drug crisis. However, it also delves into energy issues, arguing for more biomass and hydro power rather than new wind and solar power projects, which, LePage contends, "socialists love to subsidize." Some observers noted that, like his failed effort to veto dozens of bills last year, LePage shot himself in the foot by denying himself the opportunity to deliver the State of the State in person.
Forestry: Slow growth market
Other - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Around the world, institutional investors’ appetite for timberland is rising as they desperately seek alternative sources of income. One of the biggest shifts in conditions came late last year when Weyerhaeuser acquired Plum Creek Timber Company in an $8.4 billion deal that combined Weyerhaeuser’s 6.9 million acres of timber with Plum Creek’s 6.3 million acres to create the largest private timber owner in the US. The new entity will account for over 80% of the market cap of the timber REIT sector. Just before the merger, Plum Creek formed Twin Creeks Timber, a joint venture with several US pension funds to own and manage a portfolio of US timberland. In exchange for a 75% share in Twin Creeks, an institutional investor group will contribute approximately $420 million to Twin Creeks, and commit about $330 million for future timberland acquisitions. Plum Creek will sell timberlands valued at approximately $420 million to the venture for cash.
Owls Head offers $305,000 for land to preserve harbor access
Bangor Daily News - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Selectmen have reached an agreement to acquire land that will retain public access to its deep-water harbor after it was unable to renew a 50-year easement on an adjacent wharf. Selectmen have reached a purchase and sales agreement with Elizabeth and Thomas Watkinson to purchase 1.24 acres from the couple for $305,000. Public access to Owls Head Harbor is required by the federal government for it to maintain the federal channel that eventually will have to be dredged again.
Opinion: Why there’s a place for Maine’s northern forest heritage in our national park system
Bangor Daily News - Monday, February 08, 2016 

A lot of attention has been given to the proposed donation of land by Roxanne Quimby to establish a national park in the Katahdin region of Maine. The national park system does not yet fully represent our nation’s diversity of natural resources. Maine’s rich northern forest heritage, for example, is not reflected in the national park system. In terms of adding representation, the Quimby property would provide an example of the Laurentian Mixed Forest Ecoregion. We encourage support for Quimby’s gift that would provide representation for Maine’s forests in the national park system, while providing the traditional uses and enjoyment special to northern Maine. ~ Mary Foley, Carrabassett Valley, former National Park Service Northeast regional chief scientist, and Michael Soukup, Blue Hill, former National Park Service chief scientist
Portland trys to balance between staying true to its roots and economic development
Mainebiz - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Portland's hot — a city where life is good, a place where people want to live, work and play. That's backed up by several southern Maine forecasts at the Maine Real Estate & Development Association's annual conference last month showing the city's real estate metrics in 2015 to be exceptionally strong. But there's ample evidence Portland is experiencing some growing pains as architects, developers, municipal officials and residents struggle to find common ground on the city's growth challenges and potential solutions.
LePage nominates Harry Ricker of Turner to land conservation board
Associated Press - Monday, February 08, 2016 

Maine Gov. Paul LePage has nominated three new members to serve on a board that reviews and approves requests for state funding for land conservation projects. The nominees to the Land for Maine's Future Board are due for legislative review later this month. LePage's nominees are Bob Meyers of the Maine Snowmobile Association; Harry Ricker of Ricker Hill Orchards; and Fred Bucklin, who runs a property appraisal company. The conservation bonds were subject of a flap when the governor refused to sign $11.5 million in voter-approved bonds. The governor has since said he would sell the bonds, and the Legislature approved a bill last month reauthorizing $6.5 million of expired bonds.
Bike, kayak rental business coming to downtown Bangor
Bangor Daily News - Monday, February 08, 2016 

A business setting up shop in downtown Bangor will rent bikes, kayaks, paddle boards and skis to help locals and visitors explore the community in new ways. Jamie McDonough hopes to open Explore Bangor about mid-March in the storefront at 25 Hammond St. next to Giacomo’s.
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News Feeds

Maine Organic Farmers
and Gardeners Assn

Stadiums Score with Farm-to-Game Eats
By Jodi Helmer - Golden 1 Center in Sacramento and Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta – both under construction – plan to emphasize local foods. In Atlanta, raised beds will produce fruits and vegetables for Falcons fans; in Sacramento, 90 percent of the foods served in the concessions at Golden 1 Center will be sourced from more than 750 local farmers, ranchers, and artisanal food producers within a 150-mile radius of the stadium.
2/4/2016 11:00:00 PM

This Company Might be Setting a New Bar for Transparency in Food
By Rachel Cernansky - The Real Co. is launching a new “Single Origin Verified” label to tell consumers exactly where their food comes from and who made it.
2/3/2016 11:00:00 PM

To Feed the World, Tap Into Organic's Potential: Study
By Andrea Germanos - A new review of four decades of science has come to this conclusion: organic agriculture has a key role to play in feeding the world.
2/3/2016 11:00:00 PM

Sodexo chosen as new food service vendor for UMaine
The University of Maine System has announced its choice of France-based Sodexo Inc. as the new food service vendor on six of its seven campus locations. Sodexo has not only agreed to UMaine's recent commitment to sourcing 20% of its food locally by the first year of its contract, it hopes to surpass that amount by 2020 with a goal of locally sourcing 25% to 30% of its food.
2/2/2016 11:00:00 PM

40 years of science: Organic ag key to feeding the world
By Sylvia Kantor - Washington State University researchers have concluded that feeding a growing global population with sustainability goals in mind is possible. Their review of hundreds of published studies provides evidence that organic farming can produce sufficient yields, be profitable for farmers, protect and improve the environment and be safer for farm workers.
2/2/2016 11:00:00 PM

Senate Looks to Classify Biomass as Renewable, Carbon Neutral
By Fred Bever - An energy bill that hit the floor of the U.S. Senate this week could provide assistance to the biomass energy industry. U.S. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King of Maine are backing an amendment that supports the classification of biomass as a renewable resource – a move that’s drawing fire from some environmental groups.
2/2/2016 11:00:00 PM

Are Bee-Killing Pesticides Impacting Our Health?
By Elizabeth Grossman - What do we know about the human health effects of neonicotinoids? Astonishingly little. Here’s why scientists say that isn’t good enough.
2/2/2016 11:00:00 PM

Belfast councilors decide against use of pesticides in park
By Abigail Curtis - City councilors have unanimously supported the creation of a public labyrinth walking path at Belfast Common and decided against the use of pesticides in the same park.
2/2/2016 11:00:00 PM

Natural Resources Council
of Maine

Reduce Your Foodprint

Reduce the strain on the land, water, fuel, and other resources by reducing the amount of food you throw ou...

2/10/2016 4:00:21 AM

Recycle e-Waste

In Maine, computers, televisions, and other electronic equipment are considered “e-waste” becau...

2/9/2016 4:00:14 AM

Why There’s a Place for Maine’s Northern Forest Heritage in Our National Park System

By Mary Foley and Michael Soukup, Special to the BDN Bangor Daily News op-ed A lot of attention has been gi...

2/8/2016 8:39:55 AM

My Maine This Week: Terry Sprague

“These photos were shot on January 31, 2016. After a few mild days, the snow shoveled from our kitche...

2/8/2016 8:02:31 AM

Be an Energy Star

Buy energy-efficient appliances and office equipment. According to the EPA, depending on the specific item,...

2/8/2016 4:00:09 AM

Color Me Green

Unless your child wishes to create something special, save the paper – encourage him or her to exerci...

2/7/2016 4:00:45 AM

Buy Local

Buying locally produced items cuts down on the amount of global warming pollution needed to transport the i...

2/6/2016 4:00:08 AM

Plastic and Foam Containers Have an Impact, in Maine and Globally

Do you know that the plastic bag you innocently accept when the cashier hands you your groceries could actu...

2/5/2016 1:09:02 PM

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