April 23, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to conservation and natural resource news and events in Maine (and a bit beyond; hey, we're all connected). We have posted summaries and links to 60,000 news articles and announcements. We 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 our attention a few days after they are published. Follow us on Twitter @MaineEnviroNews. ~ Jym St. Pierre, Editor
Granite quarries of East Blue Hill, Apr 30
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

Bob Slaven will discuss what was a thriving granite industry in East Blue Hill. At Blue Hill Public Library, April 30, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Blue Hill Heritage Trust.
Friends of Casco Bay Appreciation Celebration & Annual Meeting, Apr 30
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

At Harraseeket Inn, Freeport, April 30, 5:30-8 pm, suggested donation $20.
Return to Moose River, Apr 30
Event - Posted - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

Registered Maine Guide Earl Brechlin will read from his collection of essays, “Return to Moose River: In Search of the Spirit of the Great North Woods” at Norway Memorial Library, April 30, 6:30 pm.
How to impact conservation lawmaking through your stories, Apr 29
Event - Posted - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Rep. Chloe Maxmin, of Nobleboro, and Kathleen Meil, director of policy and partnerships for the Maine Conservation Alliance, will speak about environmental and conservation lawmaking. At Newcastle Fire Department, April 29, 6:30 pm.
Hoping for a Harpswell Heron, Apr 28
Event - Posted - Sunday, April 21, 2019 

Learn about herons and the tracking project from Danielle D’Auria, project leader for the Heron Observation Network of Maine. At Harpswell Heritage Land Trust office, Harpswell, April 28, 3 pm.
Scarborough Marsh Clean Up, Apr 28
Event - Posted - Sunday, April 21, 2019 

Join Maine Audubon, Friends of Scarborough Marsh, Maine Inland Fisheries & Wildlife, and the Scarborough community to clean up the marsh, beaches, and Nature Center grounds for the new season. At Scarborough Marsh Audubon Center, April 28, 9 am - 12 pm.
Kennebec Land Trust celebrates new Pittston preserve, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

The Kennebec Land Trust will celebrate its newest acquisition, 22-acre Eastern River Preserve. Judy Schuppien and Phil Brzozowski donated the land. At Pittston, April 27, 1 pm.
Maine Spring LIVE, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

A day-long festival featuring live animal presentations, bird and nature walks, citizen science projects and opportunities, birdhouse construction demonstrations, solar energy tours, games, etc. At Maine Audubon's Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, April 27.
Feathers over Freeport, Apr 27-28
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

A birdwatching weekend for all ages. At Bradbury Mountain and Wolfe's Neck Woods State Parks, April 27-28.
Birding Field Trip: Whiskeag Creek, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

Explore Whiskeag Creek, Bath, where it empties into the Kennebec River at Thorne Head. April 27, 7:30am – noon. Sponsored by Merrymeeting Audubon and the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust.
Maine Bird Atlas Workshop, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

Learn about the Maine Bird Atlas, a project to survey and map the distribution and abundance of breeding and wintering birds in Maine. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, April 27, 3-5 pm. Sponsored by Brunswick Topsham Land Trust.
Maine Association of Conservation Commissions Annual Conference, Apr 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, April 20, 2019 

Amanda Shearin, Habitat Outreach Coordinator, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, will discuss "Climate Change Impacts to and Adaptive Strategies for Coastal and Inland Communities." Fred Snow, president, Maine Association of Conservation Commissions, will discuss how conservation commission involvement in Comprehensive Plan updates can make a difference. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, April 27, 9 am.
Woodcock Watch, Apr 26
Event - Posted - Friday, April 19, 2019 

Learn about the American Woodcock and experience one of spring's delights—the dazzling displays of courting woodcocks. At Fields Pond, Holden, April 26, 7 pm, Maine Audubon members $8, non-members $10.
The Messenger Film Screening, Apr 25
Event - Posted - Thursday, April 18, 2019 

This documentary explores our deep-seated connection to birds and warns that the uncertain fate of songbirds might mirror our own. At Frontier, Brunswick, April 25, 7 pm. Sponsored by Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust and Freeport Wild Bird Supply.
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News Items
Last Stand
Down East - Thursday, January 31, 2019 

Wabanaki basketmakers try to save our state’s ash trees — and their traditional craft — from the emerald ash borer.
Watch: A tribute song in memory of Maine’s great black hawk The hawk that flew the wrong way
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, January 31, 2019 

The great black hawk that has been suffering from frostbite since its rescue from a Portland Park during a snowstorm has been euthanized. Native to Central and South America, the great black hawk is the first of its kind to be spotted in the United States.
Editorial: Ending gross metering a good first step for solar development
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, January 31, 2019 

For years, Maine homeowners and others have received credits when they use alternative generation to produce electricity on their property and sell the excess into the power grid. The system, known as “net metering,” has helped promote the development of renewable energy, particularly solar. But a problematic new approach to the system, known as “gross metering,” assess fees for the transmission and distribution of that energy is charged even on power that never leaves the home or business where it is generated. While there undoubtedly are diverging opinions on what the future of solar regulation in Maine should look like — lawmakers should be deliberate in shaping that future — both sides of the aisle should unite around a common starting point: the gross metering experiment has been a failure, and it’s time to end it.
Opinion: Boothbay Harbor debate misrepresented
Working Waterfront - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 

The Working Waterfront’s analysis of Boothbay Harbor’s recent planning conflicts (“The last fisherman?” February/March issue) fails to understand that the situation is more complicated than anyone who isn’t living it could believe. ~ Patty Minerich, Boothbay Harbor
Lawmakers back Mills’ environmental protection pick despite tribal opposition
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 

Maine’s top environmental lawyer won a legislative panel’s approval on Wednesday to run the state Department of Environmental Protection despite opposition from members of the Penobscot Nation and others wary of his stances on tribal water rights. Mills nominated Jerry Reid to run the Maine DEP after 25 years in the attorney general’s office. After a hearing that stretched almost six hours, he was endorsed unanimously by the Legislature’s environmental committee. He was at the center of raw legal fights between the state and tribes. Reid won support from the Natural Resources Council of Maine, the Conservation Law Foundation and Maine Conservation Voters. The Sierra Club, members of the Penobscot Nation and some progressives opposed him.
Maine 4-H Foundation purchases camp on Long Lake in Princeton
WABI-TV5 - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 

The site of a former camp in Washington County has been purchased by the Maine 4-H Foundation. The 64-acre Greenland Point Center on Long Lake in Princeton is expected to open next spring as a youth camp that will focus on outdoor education, ecology, and conservation. Donors helped raise the initial $350,000 for the purchase, and 4-H is working to raise an additional matching amount to make upgrades to the camp.
Column: Eco-time’s a-waistin’
Times Record - Wednesday, January 30, 2019 

The planet may not be spinning out of control, but it sure feels that way. As I write this it’s raining outside my window, 6:30 a.m., and the porch thermometer displays an awesome 45 degrees. Forty-eight hours earlier the temp was 5 Fahrenheit, dropping to zero by midday. The most amazing part is that there are still those convinced that climate change is a false-science conspiracy undermining our deserved way of life. Having recently gained the distinction of being Maine’s hardest hit community for unrealized property value due to projected sea level elevation in the coming years, Bath needs to get some seriously proactive environmental mojo working some serious overtime. All the e-savviness in the world won’t quell a rising Kennebec. ~ Gary Anderson
Tips for attending, competing in US National Toboggan Championships
Aislinn Sarnacki Act Out Blog - Tuesday, January 29, 2019 

Zipping down a chute of ice at 40 mph while clinging to a simple wooden sled sounds a bit crazy, but that’s precisely what hundreds of people do each February at the US National Toboggan Championships in Camden, Maine. And for several years now, I’ve been one of those people, screaming my heart out and holding my teammates tight as we’ve shot down the chute and out onto Hosmer Pond. Sadly, I can’t attend the one-of-a-kind event this year. I have important travel plans. So I thought I’d ask you to enjoy the festivities for me. In case you’re new to the Toboggan Championships, I have a few tips.
As Maine debates 145-mile electric line, energy giant with billions at stake is absent
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, January 29, 2019 

As Maine regulators are deciding whether to approve the construction of a $1 billion transmission line across much of western Maine, the Canadian hydroelectric utility poised to make billions of dollars from the project has been absent from the process. This has left both opponents and supporters of the line arguing about how much available energy the utility has to send through a completed line, and whether that energy will help fulfill the mission of the project: fighting climate change. And while the utility has avoided making its case before regulators, which requires submitting to cross-examination and discovery, it has engaged in a public relations campaign to try and win support from the region’s newspapers.
Column: A moment of appreciation for Maine’s gulls
Times Record - Tuesday, January 29, 2019 

Maine’s gulls are one of the most ubiquitous residents of the coast and, while in the summer they may seem to be more a nuisance, leaving their white markings on all that falls below them, in the winter I welcome their presence and am impressed by their heartiness. While their flying ability is impressive (and graceful to watch), many of them don’t travel very far. A few species migrate seasonally, but most stay in their home territory despite extreme changes in weather. That’s why they offer a welcome flutter of life even in the coldest months of winter along the Maine coast. ~ Susan Olcott
Vessel Services: Where fishing boats go to shop
Working Waterfront - Monday, January 28, 2019 

The marine economy often hides in plain sight. A case in point is Portland's Vessel Services, whose nondescript buildings are tucked down a wharf just off Commercial Street. If policy makers are going to support all segments of this sizable sector, it needs to be seen and understood.
Opinion: How the community can respond to climate change
Working Waterfront - Monday, January 28, 2019 

When communities show up in discussions of climate change, they do so as the victims of increasingly violent weather events—category 5 hurricanes, massive, drought-driven fires, and “super storms” devour communities. For the first time, we have a governor who says she shares our concerns. We hope that Gov. Janet Mills will provide additional leverage to establish Maine as a national leader in building strong climate change skills along the coast and across the state. The coast and islands are certainly on the front line of this crisis, and the rest of the state isn’t far behind. It will be through the practical actions of strong communities that the greatest strides will be made to address the threat of climate change. ~ Rob Snyder, Island Institute
Opinion: The shutdown has a high price, and national parks are footing the bill
Maine Campus - Monday, January 28, 2019 

It had been over a month since the government shut down at midnight on Dec. 22. There was one enormous factor that the media and the American people paid little attention to. The nation’s national parks, its wildlife refuges, and its endangered species were put in harm’s way and disregarded to a dastardly degree during this shutdown, and they face a far more grave fate should plans for the wall move forward. Donald Trump only cares about winning. National parks, endangered species, and regulations to protect such things are just obstacles standing in the way of a 700-mile long symbol of his ego. Future generations will look back and shake their heads. ~ Nate Poole
2 Maine eel dealers face charges after illegal sales cut lucrative fishing season short
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 27, 2019 

Illegal sales of baby eels that caused last year’s abrupt closure of Maine’s elver fishery have resulted in criminal charges for two baby eel dealers and new rules from the state proposing closer oversight of the lucrative fishery. The Maine dealers accused of making illegal cash purchases of elvers last spring are Roger Bintliff and Freddie Mei, according to Jeff Nichols, spokesman for the state Department of Marine Resources.
Column: Maine wildlife chief no stranger to drama like the great black hawk flap
Portland Press Herald - Sunday, January 27, 2019 

Little did Judy Camuso know, back when Gov. Janet Mills nominated her to head the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, that the question on everyone’s lips at her legislative confirmation hearing Wednesday will go something like this: “Would the acting commissioner please articulate, both for the committee’s peace of mind and that of the people of Maine, what’s going to happen to the hawk?” Camuso admitted in an interview Friday that she doesn’t yet know the answer. But, she conceded with a laugh, “I’m going to have to have one that’s acceptable.” ~ Bill Nemitz
Editorial: It’s time to think big in Maine agriculture
Portland Press Herald - Sunday, January 27, 2019 

Amanda Beal, Gov. Janet Mills’ nominee to head the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, will have to help restart conservation efforts after eight years in which it was not a priority for the Blaine House. She’ll have to guide state policy in support of the resurgent forest products industry. And Beal be at the helm during a critical time in Maine agriculture. On that last count, she doesn’t have to look far for inspiration. Beal, who spent the last two-plus years as president and CEO of Maine Farmland Trust and served on the board of directors at the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, was one of the authors of the “New England Food Vision.” The seeds have been planted for a bright future in Maine agriculture, but they have to tended the right way. It’s time to think big.
Chasing change: Maine’s great black hawk and other signs
Other - Saturday, January 26, 2019 

Union Leader (NH) - The recent rescue of a great black hawk in Portland, Maine, has my imagination going wild. What vagrants of centuries past are now considered native species? When you lengthen time scales, our human-generated lists of species and population maps and birds who don’t belong fade into the mist. There’s a living, breathing, ever-changing ecosystem out there and if humans are present, you’d best be sure we’re in the mix, too. ~ Emily Lord
Mills takes first step to install solar panels on Blaine House
Associated Press - Saturday, January 26, 2019 

Maine’s new Democratic governor is taking steps to install solar panels on the governor’s mansion as she calls for the state to be more welcoming of renewable energy. Gov. Janet Mills’ administration posted a request for proposals Friday to move ahead on plans to design and install a photovoltaic system that would supply 50 percent of the Blaine House’s electricity needs.
Landowners Getting A Trespass Fee
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, January 26, 2019 

We’re very lucky in Maine to have free access to so much private land. You probably know that access to private land in many states is not available. I recently read a story about an online marketplace in the Western states that allows landowners to list their property for use by hunters, anglers and other recreationists who must pay a trespass fee. Check this out at EntryG8.com. There’s another platform, WikiparX, that allows land owners to sell permits for many types of recreation on their property. It is important to all of us who recreate on private land in Maine, to develop good relationships with the landowners and to make sure they know how much we appreciate the opportunity to enjoy their properties.
Opinion: Legislators can take steps to prevent Maine’s coming regulatory storm
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, January 26, 2019 

During her recent inaugural address, Gov. Mills warned Maine residents that a recession could be on the horizon. While to some extent recessions are inevitable, the next economic slump could be entirely manmade. That’s because, according to a new analysis, regulatory requirements in the state are piling up by the tens of thousands. All this red tape could hit the state’s economy like a regulatory tsunami. If Gov. Mills is truly worried about the possibility of a recession, now is an opportune time for meaningful regulatory reform that boosts the economy for years to come. ~ James Broughel, Mercatus Center at George Mason University in Virginia, and Jacob Posik, Maine Heritage Policy Center
Gulf of Maine, Explained: Bluefin Tuna
Other - Friday, January 25, 2019 

Bluefin tuna are special. Their large size and unique physiology (these fish are warm-blooded) are part of what makes them so interesting, but on top of that, bluefin tuna also have a relatively mysterious life history. It’s these mysteries that drive Dr. Golet’s fascination. Bluefin can be a source of confusion for the public, especially as contradictory information swirls in the news media. In this video, Dr. Walt Golet shares some of what we know about bluefin in the Gulf of Maine.
NYDEC helps Maine game wardens ticket Glens Falls man
Other - Friday, January 25, 2019 

Adirondack Daily Enterprise - Earlier this month, New York Department of Environmental Conservation officers George Lapoint and Alan Brassard assisted the Maine Warden Service in its investigation of a deer shot from the road in Allagash, Maine. The investigation determined the deer was shot by a Glens Falls man who had returned to New York the same night.
Connecting people with the outdoors
Sun Journal - Friday, January 25, 2019 

Kevin Frost, a registered Maine guide and owner of Bug’n Out Adventures, specializes in recreational adventures and wilderness education. In the warmer months, Frost holds introductory gold panning clinics at Coos Canyon in Byron, and leads guided hikes to destinations such as Angel Falls and Tumbledown. “Bug’n Out Adventures is committed to promoting Maine through a combination of education and adventure,” said Frost.
Conservationists Take To The Skies To Observe Rising Sea Levels Along The Maine Shoreline
Maine Public - Friday, January 25, 2019 

This past Tuesday, more than 20 LightHawk volunteer pilots around the country took to the skies to record the effects of a natural phenomenon that happens twice a year: a King Tide. Volunteer Peter Slovinsky, is especially interested in showing Rep. Lydia Blume, a Maine lawmaker who serves on the Marine Resources Committee, areas of the coast at risk for flooding.
As Fiberight plant nears completion, municipal representatives seek clearer communication
Morning Sentinel - Friday, January 25, 2019 

The schedule for completing the facility has been revised three times, delaying its opening a full year, and at the latest meeting town officials voiced their frustrations with mixed messages they've received.
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