July 24, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Friday, July 21, 2017 

Thanks for visiting Maine Environmental News, a service of RESTORE: The North Woods. MEN is the most comprehensive online source available for links to Maine conservation and natural resource news and events. We have posted summaries and links to 50,000 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
“Bringing Nature Home” in Maine, Jul 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 

Join Maine Audubon’s Director of Education, Eric Topper, to explore the plants, practices and perks involved in restoring native food webs in our gardens, yards and communities. At Portland Public Library, Rines Auditorium, July 26, 5:30 pm.
Little Swan Island Evening Paddle, Jul 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 

Leader: Warren Whitney. At Richmond, July 26, 5:30-7:30 pm. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
Exploring the Night Sky, Jul 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, July 18, 2017 

Discover the wonders of the night sky with astronomer Bernie Reim. At Scarborough Marsh, July 25, 8:30-9:30 pm, Maine Audubon members $6, non-members $8.
Recreational Fishing, Jul 24
Announcement - Monday, July 17, 2017 

Hear from experts on what fishing means to Maine's culture and economy, best places to go, ways to get started. Guests: Mac McKeever, LL Bean senior public relations representative; Bonnie Holding, Director of Information and Education, Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. Maine Public Radio, July 24, 1 pm.
Maine Open Farm Day, Jul 23
Event - Posted - Sunday, July 16, 2017 

Maine has about 8,200 farm operations statewide, worth more than $740 million, not including face-to-face sales. Officially, more than 60 farms in all 16 counties are open July 23, although historically many other farms also open their doors to piggy-back on the event.
Summer Nature Journaling, Jul 22
Event - Posted - Saturday, July 15, 2017 

Join Master Naturalist Andrea Lani to explore the worlds of wildflowers and insects beginning with an introduction to nature journaling, then heading into the woods and fields to observe, sketch, and write about the bugs and blooms you discover. At Viles Arboretum, Augusta, July 22, 10 am - 2 pm, Arboretum members $35, others $45.

Rainbow Loop Trail Grand Opening, Jul 21-22
Event - Posted - Friday, July 14, 2017 

Celebration in Millinocket, July 21, 5-7 pm. 6-mile hike on the spectacular Rainbow Loop Trail, July 22 at 8:30 am and 9:30 am. Sponsored by The Nature Conservancy.
Native Plant Walk, Jul 20
Event - Posted - Thursday, July 13, 2017 

Explore the habitats at Fields Pond with Heather McCargo and learn to recognize some of the wildflowers, ferns, shrubs and trees native to Maine. At Fields Pond, Holden, July 20, 10-11:30 am, Maine Audubon and Wild Seed Project members $7; non-members $10.
Happy Birthday, Henry
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Henry David Thoreau, American poet, author, naturalist, philosopher, abolitionist, and leading Transcendentalist, was born on July 12, 1817 in Concord, Mass.
Help wanted: NRCM Forests and Wildlife Outreach Coordinator
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Works with Natural Resources Council of Maine's Forests and Wildlife Project Director to advance the goals of the Forests and Wildlife Project, and works with the Outreach Team to serve the strategic goals of the organization as a whole. Deadline Aug 7, 2017.
Help wanted: NRCM Clean Energy Policy Advocate & Staff Attorney
Announcement - Wednesday, July 12, 2017 

Helps advance Natural Resources Council of Maine initiatives by providing legal, policy and advocacy support primarily for the Climate & Clean Energy Project. Deadline Jul 24, 2017.
Time to override the governor’s solar veto
Action Alert - Monday, July 10, 2017 

We are so close to having a new solar power law. The full Maine House and Senate enacted LD 1504 (with amendments) by overwhelming majorities. However, it was vetoed by the Governor. Tell your legislators—particularly House members—how much solar matters to you and your community. ~ Maine Audubon
The Goslings, July 17
Event - Posted - Monday, July 10, 2017 

Visit The Goslings, one of the best-loved island destinations on Casco Bay. ShoreKeepers, a group of young conservation-minded donors, are hosting a free Open House with hot dogs on the beach to complete the perfect island getaway, July 17, 10 am - 2 pm. Meet at Mere Point Boat Launch, Brunswick, shuttles approximately every 15 minutes. Sponsored by Maine Coast Heritage Trust.
Thwings Point Archaeology Field School, Jul 17-28
Event - Posted - Monday, July 10, 2017 

Lee Cranmer leads an Archaeology Field School, Woolwich, July 17-28. Sponsored by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay.
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News Items
New England renewable energy a hard sell in region
Associated Press - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Establishing a New England market to buy renewable energy seemed a laudable goal when governors committed last year to bulk purchases of wind and solar power to knock down the price while reducing the region's reliance on fossil fuels. Consumers could benefit from price stability, even from costlier wind and energy power. But putting together details about what types of renewable energy the six states will buy in the groundbreaking deal is snared in a patchwork of rules, state laws and disagreements over how even to define alternative energy.
Opinion: People deserve protection from toxic chemicals
Sun Journal - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

We are all immersed in a toxic soup where we live, work, eat and play. The cumulative effect of these toxic chemicals on us, and on the plants and animals that share our planet, is huge. Chemical industry lobbyists may claim your exposure to each of these chemicals is no problem, but the science is not on their side. No one knows how dangerous this toxic soup might be because manufacturers don’t have to prove their products are safe. Fortunately, Maine has a landmark chemical law, called the Kid-Safe Products Act, that requires the state to use sound science to evaluate the most dangerous toxic chemicals, identify what products they are in and what alternatives are safer, and phase out the very worst chemicals from products that are on the shelf today. Our law is working, but no more action on new chemicals is likely without some necessary changes. ~ Abigail King, Natural Resources Council of Maine
Exxon cleans up oil spill in Arkansas housing development; Keystone plan assailed
Reuters - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Exxon Mobil on Sunday continued cleanup of a pipeline spill that spewed thousands of barrels of heavy Canadian crude in Arkansas as opponents of oil sands development latched on to the incident to attack plans to build the Keystone XL pipeline.
Coplin Plantation couple draws deer by the dozens at dinner time
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Every afternoon, by at least 1 p.m., deer start gathering by the dozen in Harriet and Basil Powers' front yard. As 3:30 p.m. approaches, more begin to gather. They've learned that every day at that time, Basil Powers will feed all that come. That's nearly 100 that have arrived, expecting corn. Harriet, 80, and Basil, 81, have been feeding the deer for more 50 years. The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife discourages people from feeding deer, but the couple continues to do it anyway. Doug Rafferty, a department spokesman, said no rule prohibits feeding the deer, but his department has health and safety concerns about drawing a large gathering of deer by feeding them.
Longtime homeowners fear there may be little they can do to stop Popham Beach erosion
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

During summers spent as children at their cottage at Popham’s Hunnewell Beach, Fred and Richard Hill’s mother, Harriet, always told them the erosion that scours the sand followed a 50-year cycle. Some years, the ocean makes its way up the sand to the cottages and then — sometimes leaving destruction in its wake — cedes the land back. Over the years, efforts to hold back the waves have intensified, most notably during the 1970s when 11 cottages fell into the sea. This year, as powerful storms carved into the dunes at Popham Beach State Park, some homeowners reinforced a stone seawall.
Registry would begin gathering information on U.S. veterans exposed to toxic chemicals at Canadian base
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

For decades members of the Maine National Guard and reserves trained at Canadian Forces Base Gagetown in New Brunswick, about 100 miles east of the Maine border. In 2007 the Canadian government admitted to working with the United States military in testing the herbicides Agent Orange, Agent Purple, Agent White and other unregistered pesticides at locations around the base in the late 1960s and began paying one-time settlements to its own veterans who served on the base. Last week Rep. Mike Michaud, ranking member of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, reintroduced a bill to help Maine veterans who trained at Gagetown after the testing period and may be concerned they were exposed to toxic levels of the herbicides.
Passamaquoddy Tribe opposes elver fishing license regulations
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Passamaquoddy Tribal representatives said that limiting the elver catch to 3,600 pounds and allowing fishermen to use just one net was a better way to manage the resource than issuing a set number of licenses to tribal members. “Fishing is part of our tradition,” Clayton Cleaves, chief of the Passamaquoddy Tribe at Pleasant Point, said. “It’s part of our religion.” Maine Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher said the tribe started talking about a quota-based system “very late” for it to be implemented this year.
Exxon pipeline leaks thousands of barrels of Canadian oil in Arkansas
Reuters - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Exxon Mobil was working to clean up thousands of barrels of oil in Mayflower, Ark., after a pipeline carrying heavy Canadian crude ruptured, a major spill likely to stoke debate over transporting Canada’s oil to the United States. Exxon shut the Pegasus pipeline after the leak was discovered on Friday afternoon. Exxon, hit with a $1.7 million fine by regulators this week over a 2011 spill in the Yellowstone River, said a few thousand barrels of oil had been observed.
Starting in Maine, tidal energy projects slowly taking hold across nation
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

The Day - In the United States, Ocean Renewable Power Co. achieved a major milestone in September when it began delivering power from a turbine in Cobscook Bay, between Eastport and Lubec, Maine, to Bangor Hydro Electric. It was the first time in U.S. history that power from a tidal generator has fed the commercial grid. Over the next five years, the company plans to install enough turbines to generate a total of 5 megawatts of power. “We’ve been at this for 8½ years, and we’ve had our share of ups and downs,” said Christopher Sauer, president and chief executive officer of Ocean Renewable. “Now, people are calling us from all over the world — Ireland, Scotland, Chile, Japan.”
Opinion: Maine lobsterman no stranger to unions
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

A glance at the dusty archives of Maine labor history reveals that when they believe they were denied the full "fruits of their labor" (the lobster catch ), lobster fishermen could become militant, engage in collective action, and shatter such stereotypical images of their life and work. Archival fragments shout out that the Maine lobster fishermen made a major contribution to the American labor movement when they organized the Lobster Fishermen's International Protective Association, American Federation of Labor in 1907, "the first of its kind in the history of the labor movement." ~ Charles Scontras, Cape Elizabeth
Column: Resurrection is a miracle we overlook
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

I have celebrated all the Easter rituals, I believe, since childhood and hold to — and are held by — them still. Even so, what gave me a sudden joyous awe of resurrection was an unexpected, though hardly startling, return, dawning in the most unlikely place at a moment I could not have predicted. It was the silvery glow of a wild pussy willow that caught me, the catkins like velvet light in the dusk coming on at the end of the workday. ~ North Cairn
Column: With a little help from his friends, here may come Peter Cottontail
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

On Easter it seems appropriate to discuss the efforts by state and federal biologists to protect the proverbial Mr. Cottontail, known in these parts as the New England cottontail rabbit. And his numbers are low in Maine, with fewer than 300 at last count, a fact that landed him on the Maine endangered species list in 2006. But of all the endangered species that have been recovered, or at least helped by human intervention in Maine, none other seems to have drawn such public involvement and help on the ground from so many different local groups. And that's the good news here. ~ Deirdre Fleming
Column: Sparrow's sweet song is fleeting
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

Sparrows are some of the most challenging birds to identify. Many of them have muted, dark plumages, offering few obvious identification features. Add the secretive nature of many sparrows and clinching an identification can be tough. ~ Herb Wilson
Column: April fishing is hit or miss, but the hits are worth it
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

During recent years in Maine's bottom half, anglers can legally fish from Jan. 1 through Dec. 31 in open water on lakes and ponds, but most anglers still recognize April Fool's Day as the traditional opener, as if changing the law to year-round fishing had never happened. Because of that, they consider this Monday as the kickoff date as it had been for decades. Years will pass before this ingrained April 1 fishing opener completely changes. ~ Ken Allen
Column: When it comes to moose, it really is the luck of the draw
Sun Journal - Sunday, March 31, 2013 

When it comes to putting wild meat in the freezer, the Maine's annual moose hunt has no match. Last fall's hunt was a big success.With a total of 3,725 permits allocated by the state, hunters bagged 2,895 moose across the state for a total success rate of 78 percent. That is a 12 percent increase from the 2011 success rate. When June 16th rolls around, thousands of prospective moose hunters will be watching the "throw of the dice" in Greenville with fingers crossed. Good luck, but don't forget: your name won't be in the lottery computer if you don't submit an application. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Into the wild with comforts
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, March 30, 2013 

This year was the 5-year-old Maine Huts and Trails system's busiest yet, with 4,280 overnight guests visiting from the end of December through March (up from 2,802 in 2011). Sure the huts get all the press, but the trail is the thing at the heart of this grand idea that promises a 180-mile path from the Mahoosuc Mountains to Moosehead Lake.
Conservations striving to keep Peter Cottontail’s species off the endangered list
Associated Press - Saturday, March 30, 2013 

The New England cottontail was once so common that author Thornton Burgess adapted one named Peter for the children’s stories he penned a century ago. But the critter that inspired “The Adventures of Peter Cottontail” and the enduring song that came later faces an uncertain future. Its natural habitat is disappearing, and without intervention, it could be unhappy trails for the once-bountiful bunny. Conservationists are hoping a new program to restore shrub lands across the Northeast and captive breeding efforts will help ensure the New England cottontail sticks around for many Easters to come.
In weekly address, LePage tries to mislead the public (again) on hydropower
Dirigo Blue Blog - Saturday, March 30, 2013 

Gov. Paul LePage continues to mislead the people of Maine regarding the sale of hydro-electricity. LePage states: “Under Governors King and Baldacci, legislators enacted RPS — the Renewable Portfolio Standard — which restricts us to using only 100 megawatts of hydropower.” This is an outright lie. The Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requires that a certain percentage of electricity consumed in Maine come from renewable sources, currently 36% (it will increase in steps to 40% by 2017). The RPS limits the size of power plants that can be counted as “renewable” at 100MW, excepting wind farms. But there are NO restrictions on the sale of power from plants larger than 100MW in the non-RPS market. LePage is under the delusion that Hydro-Québec will sell its surplus electricity to Maine for incredibly cheap prices that consumers in Québec are charged.
Letter: Who will protect the animals?
Sun Journal - Saturday, March 30, 2013 

This is in response to the article, "Farms pushing bills to stop abuse videos," published in the Sun Journal March 18. Animal welfare is being pushed aside, again. It happens many times each year in all states and around the world. How else can anyone find out about animal abuse unless surveillance is done without anyone knowing about it? The animals cannot speak and have no way to defend themselves. ~ Alan Girouard, Hartford
Opinion: Increase in marketing budget critical to lobster industry's survival
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, March 30, 2013 

In response to Nelson King's March 21 letter, trap tags have never been used to fund the Lobster Promotion Council. There has been no 500 percent increase in the budget for the council. In fact, there has been no increase in money for the council in many years. Its annual budget is $380,000 a year, for an industry whose value in 2012 was just shy of $340 million. That equates to 1/10th of 1 percent of the gross value, before processing, of the lobsters landed. People who understand marketing know you must use at least 1 percent of gross revenue to effectively promote a product, whether it's milk (remember "Got Milk"?), blueberries ("Nature's anti-oxidant") or lobster. That 1 percent of $340 million is where the $3 million figure comes from. ~ David Cousens, Maine Lobstermen’s Association
First Time Campers Program Offers Free Weekend of Camping to Lucky Maine Families
Maine Government News - Friday, March 29, 2013 

In anticipation of this year’s camping season, the Maine Division of Parks and Public Lands is again offering its First Time Campers raffle program to Maine residents who want to try their hand at camping. The First Time Campers program will randomly select forty-four lucky Maine entrants to win a free weekend of camping this summer at one of eleven Maine state park campgrounds. This raffle is open only to Maine families and individuals who have never before gone camping. Each selected winner will get the free use of camping equipment, receive gifts from sponsors and be supported throughout the weekend by park staff. This year, one of those fortunate winners also will be the grand-prize recipient of a $1,000 gift certificate from the program’s major sponsor, L.L.Bean.
Passamaquoddys issue far more elver licenses than allowed by law
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 29, 2013 

A year after catching state officials off guard by issuing 236 elver fishing licenses in the middle of elver season, the Passamaquoddy Tribe has issued more than twice that amount for 2013. And in so doing, the tribe has exceeded the limit set by state law, according to Maine Department of Marine Resources Commissioner Patrick Keliher. For that reason, Keliher said Friday, the department is invalidating all but 150 of the 575 licenses issued by the tribe.
Elver fishermen form advocacy organization
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 29, 2013 

With their newly lucrative industry coming under closer scrutiny from fishing regulators, elver fishermen have decided it is time to join together to make their concerns known in Augusta and out of state. To that end, a group of about 50 met this week at the local Elks Club and formed the Maine Elver Fishermen’s Association. Darrell Young of Waltham organized the meeting. He said the group plans to attend three upcoming meetings the Atlantic State Marine Fisheries Commission has scheduled next month in Maine so it can weigh in on new fishery management measures the multistate agency is considering for American eels.
As lawmakers debate, Liberty’s last dairy farm sells its herd
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 29, 2013 

When George Millay founded Rocky Acres in Liberty, there were farms up and down his road and throughout Liberty that milked dairy cows. In 1950, the year before George started the farm, there were nearly 5,000 dairy farms in the state, according to data from the Maine Milk Commission. Now there are about 300, and Rocky Acres was the last one in Liberty. The Legislature will take up the plight of Maine’s dairy industry, which has an estimated annual economic impact of $570 million, in the coming month. Rep. Russell Black, R-Wilton, introduced LD 789, An Act To Lessen the Impact of High Feed and Fuel Costs on Maine Dairy Farmers.
Effort to unionize Maine lobstermen attracts 250 members
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 29, 2013 

Lobstermen and union organizers are taking aim at an established industry group in an effort to form Maine’s first union for lobster harvesters. About 250 lobster harvesters have signed up for the union so far, and organizers have submitted an application for a charter with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, or IAM. At an organizing meeting at the Deer Isle-Stonington High School on Wednesday, organizers with IAM pulled no punches in criticizing the Maine Lobstermen’s Association, which they said is too cozy with dealers, distributors and processors to adequately fight on behalf of harvesters.
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Art and Land Conservation Symposium
at Colby College, August 3-4

Frederic E. Church, 
Mount Katahdin from Millinocket Camp, 1895, 
Portland Museum of Art

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