March 19, 2019  
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Maine Environmental News
Action Alert - Tuesday, March 19, 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). 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
Urge Maine's Agencies to Investigate and Halt PFAS Contamination
Action Alert - Tuesday, March 19, 2019 

Highly persistent and toxic chemicals known as PFAS may be lurking undiscovered in farmlands across Maine. State records show that at an Arundel dairy farm, PFOS was in milk at the highest level ever reported anywhere. Urge Maine Ag and DEP commissioners to test the fields, stop sludge spreading, and phase out PFAS products. ~ Environmental Health Strategy Center
Retired Game Warden Randall Probert, Mar 26
Event - Posted - Tuesday, March 19, 2019 

Author, raconteur, and retired game warden Randall Probert will speak to the Hebron Historical Society on “Maine Tales and More.” At Hebron Town Office, March 26, 7 pm.
The Forests of Lilliput: The Miniature World of Lichens & Mosses, Mar 26
Event - Posted - Tuesday, March 19, 2019 

Maine Master Naturalist Jeff Pengel talks about the natural history of lichens, mosses and similar plants. At Topsham Library, March 26, 6 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Celebrating Maine’s Wild Creatures, Mar 26
Event - Posted - Tuesday, March 19, 2019 

Speaker: Ed Robinson, author of “Nature Notes from Maine: River Otters, Moose, Skunks and More.” At Curtis Library, March 16, 7 pm. Sponsored by Merrymeeting Audubon.
Ocean Acidification, Climate Change, and You, Mar 25
Event - Posted - Monday, March 18, 2019 

Friends of Casco Bay staff scientist Mike Doan talks about warning signs and Casco Baykeeper Ivy Frignoca shares the impacts to marine species and how Mainers are responding. At Southern Maine Community College, South Portland, March 25, 5:30 pm.
Mount Pisgah winter trek, Mar 24
Event - Posted - Sunday, March 17, 2019 

Kennebec Land Trust Stewardship Director Jean-Luc Theriault will lead an off-trail excursion on Mount Pisgah to visit special places that are typically less accessible. Meet at the Mount Pisgah Community Conservation Area parking lot in Winthrop, March 24, 1 pm.
Winter Family Fun Day at Lily Bay State Park, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 16, 2019 

Ice fishing, snowmobile tote rides, winter camping demo, bonfire, scavenger hunt and free loan of cross-country skis, snowshoes, ice skates, snow tubes and sleds. At Lily Bay State Park, Moosehead Lake, March 23, 10 am - 3 pm.
Winter wildlife tracking workshop, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 16, 2019 

Naturalists and certified wildlife trackers Brendan White and Matt Dickinson lead a winter wildlife tracking workshop. At at Long Ledges Preserve, Sullivan, March 23, 9-11:30 am. Sponsored by Frenchman Bay Conservancy.
Maine Grass Farmers Network Conference, Mar 23
Event - Posted - Saturday, March 16, 2019 

Livestock producers are invited to learn about grass-based production and how grazing systems can become more profitable and environmentally sound. At Kennebec County Community College's Alfond Campus, Hinckley, March 23, 8:30 am - 3 pm.
Maine becomes a state, Mar 15
Announcement - Friday, March 15, 2019 

On this day in 1820, March 15, Massachusetts lost over 30,000 square miles of land as its former province of Maine gained statehood. Mainers had begun campaigning for statehood for years following the Revolution. The Massachusetts legislature finally consented in 1819. What no one foresaw, however, was that Maine's quest for statehood would become entangled in the most divisive issue in American history — slavery.
Maine Land Conservation Conference, Apr 5-6
Event - Posted - Friday, March 15, 2019 

Maine’s robust land conservation community comes together to train on best practices in all aspects of land trust work, connect with peers, and grapple with the most pressing issues facing land conservation today. At Topsham area, April 5-6.
Thoreau Society & Thoreau Farm Trust online auction, thru Mar 29
Announcement - Friday, March 15, 2019 

This auction contains many rare books written about Henry David Thoreau and other items for every Thoreauvian.
MITA Open House and Getch Celebration, Mar 22
Event - Posted - Friday, March 15, 2019 

Toast the extraordinary life of MITA founder Dave Getchell, Sr. At Maine Island Trail Association, Portland, March 22, 5:30-7:30 pm.
Call for Artists: Paint for Preservation 2019
Announcement - Friday, March 15, 2019 

The Cape Elizabeth Land Trust is accepting artist submissions for Paint for Preservation 2019, the organization’s twelfth annual juried Wet Paint Auction and one of Maine’s premiere art auction events. This 3-day (June 28-30) plein air event raises money for land conservation in Cape Elizabeth. Deadline is March 22.
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News Items
Column: Arctic charr restored to Reed Pond
Sun Journal - Saturday, March 31, 2018 

The American Fisheries Society recently presented the fisheries division of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife with a national award for cutting edge work in the restoration of the native Arctic charr to Big Reed Pond in Piscataquis County. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Letter: Animal lives matter
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, March 31, 2018 

As innocent American citizens continue to be murdered by disturbed men armed with military-style assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, three organized groups can be counted on to resist life-saving, common-sense gun control: the National Rifle Association, Safari Club and the so-called sportsmen’s clubs. There is a documented link between the abuse and killing of defenseless animals, among many mass murderers, that often precedes the killing of people. The continued, state-sanctioned sport killing of native wildlife sends a message to disturbed people that taking innocent life is acceptable behavior when it should not be any longer. All lives matter. ~ Robert Goldman, Portland
Letter: Changes having negative impact on North Maine Woods
Fiddlehead Focus (St. John Valley, Aroostook County) - Saturday, March 31, 2018 

Ah, the days of going deer hunting in the North Maine Woods. Heading out to Allagash, seeing all the deer hanging at the sporting camps was quite the sight. Things have changed in the last 5 years. The clearcutting and spraying of our natural forests doesn’t provide the shelter and food for our deer and other animals. How did it get to be like this? I blame our politicians, period. Thank God I can bring my grandchildren to Baxter State Park, Debouille Public Reserved Land, the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, and Acadia National Park. We are so lucky to have these parks. ~ Pat Labbe, Fort Kent
Letter: Cote’s environmental concern refreshing
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, March 31, 2018 

Being in my 80s, and having served in many environmental and conservation positions – including as executive director of the Maine Audubon Society, commissioner of the Maine Department of Conservation, chair of the board of the Gulf of Maine Aquarium, member of the Maine Board of Environmental Protection and several others – I am writing today to endorse Adam Cote for our next governor. ~ Dick Anderson, Portland
Provincial Pumas in the Northeast Urban/Wildlands Interface
Other - Friday, March 30, 2018 

ecoRI News - The mountain lion is the most widespread of any large terrestrial mammal in the Western Hemisphere. European settlers eliminated them from most of their former territory in the East centuries ago. But in some parts of Canada they survived. Their descendants, found in New Brunswick and Quebec today, may be secretive but they aren’t ghosts, cases of mistaken identity or figments of our imaginations. Cougars are highly efficient predators that are well adapted to life in the densely settled Northeast. This is especially true along Maine’s mid-coast region, where most of the state’s citizens live. It’s also where most of the state’s whitetails are concentrated. That’s one reason why the Atlantic Coast is perfect habitat for cougars.
Opinion: It's Time for the Outdoor Industry to Buy Its Own Politicians
Other - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Outside - Right now, the outdoors is facing an unprecedented political attack. Efforts to halt climate change are being withdrawn. Agencies that protect the environment are being defunded. The Endangered Species Act may be “rolled back.” And efforts are underway to sell off our public lands. There’s even talk of drilling for oil in national parks. Why is this happening? In part because the oil and gas industries have bought off our politicians. Rather than complain about the state of politics, work to be the change we believe in, or espouse some other well-meaning but ultimately ineffective slogan, why don’t we borrow a leaf from the Koch brothers’ playbook and buy our own politicians?
Mainers Brace For Trump's Expected Rollback Of Auto Emissions, Efficiency Standards
Maine Public - Friday, March 30, 2018 

The Trump administration is expected to announce next week that it will relax greenhouse gas emissions and fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks that were last approved more than five years ago. Auto manufacturers are welcoming the move as a way to keep prices more affordable. Environmentalists, however, say the move will undo years of progress making cleaner cars and will result in more pollution, especially in a state like Maine. “I think this issue is going to get bogged down in the courts for a long time,” says Adam Lee, the chairman of the Lee Auto Group, one of the biggest car dealers in the state. Lee is an anomaly in the world of auto sales, a dealer who has long supported clean emissions and fuel economy standards because he thinks they’re better for the environment and for consumers, who save more money at the gas pump.
Emmy-winning Wildlife Conservationist and TV host Jeff Corwin to Deliver Unity College Commencement
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Internationally renowned wildlife conservationist and television personality Jeff Corwin, who has inspired a generation of the conservation-minded by sharing stories about the wild on shows including “Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin” and CNN’s “Planet in Peril” with Anderson Cooper, will speak at Unity College’s 2018 commencement.
Wildlife Encounters
Maine Public - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Guests: Maynard Stanley Jr., Critter Catcher wildlife control; Josh Sparks, Sparks’ Ark Animal Services; and Bob Cordes, Department of Inland Fisheries biologist.
Brewers' 'silent partner': Portland Water District honored for protecting Sebago watershed
Mainebiz - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust, a statewide land conservation organization, named Portland Water District as the 2018 recipient of its annual Espy Land Heritage Award. "Portland Water District is tasked with providing clean water for 200,000 people in 11 Greater Portland communities and their goal was to do it without the use of expensive chemical filtration systems,"said MCHT President Tim Glidden, who presented the award to the district on March 22 at the 35th annual Maine Land Conservation Conference in Rockport. "To achieve their goals, they collaborated with local land trusts and towns within the watershed to secure local forestland and provide natural buffers to protect water sources."
Column: Project FeederWatch can turn you into a scientist
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Project FeederWatch is a citizen science survey where average citizens simply look at the bird feeder and occasionally count what they’re seeing. The survey happens in winter, when large flocks of birds are meandering all over the continent. The birds have to be somewhere. If they’re not at your house, they’re at somebody else’s, perhaps several states away. The Cornell Lab or Ornithology started Project FeederWatch as an easy way to track movements and trends. Based on thousands of reports from households all over the country, they can get a sense of where these winter wanderers are going. They can also detect if populations are growing or declining. ~ Bob Duchesne
Susan Gallo wins much deserved award
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, March 30, 2018 

Susan Gallo has been doing great things at Maine Audubon for Maine’s wildlife since 1998, so it was nice that her work was recognized this year with Source’s Conservation award from the Maine Sunday Telegram.
New 3D models of Baxter State Park to give visitors a new perspective
Bangor Daily News - Friday, March 30, 2018 

This spring, new 3D terrain models of Baxter State Park will be installed throughout the park at visitor centers, campgrounds and ranger stations for the public to use while planning their backcountry adventures. Donated by Friends of Baxter State Park, these state-of-the-art displays were produced by Solid Terrain Modeling, the same company that makes terrain models for the National Geographic Explorers Hall and Smithsonian Institution. The donation consists of 10 models, which cost $65,000, making it the largest single donation Friends of Baxter State Park has ever made to the park.
Letter: Negative effects of climate change will worsen unless we act now
Portland Press Herald - Friday, March 30, 2018 

As Maine physicians, outdoor enthusiasts, parents and grandparents, we call on Mainers to stabilize our climate and protect the natural bounties that our state offers. And we entreat our elected leaders in Congress and the State House to endorse and support a bipartisan, revenue-neutral strategy (carbon fee and dividend – visit citizensclimatelobby.org for more details) that protects our well-being. We have too much to lose through delay or inaction. ~ Edward Pontius, M.D. andNicholas Bartenhagen, M.D.
Deal allows disputed expansion of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens to proceed
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

The 4-1 vote by the town’s Board of Selectmen is the latest in a drawn-out battle over a proposed $30 million expansion of the popular attraction that was first announced in 2016. Two related lawsuits will also be dropped as the agreement brings a bitter battle to a close, but details of the resolution have not been released.
Opinion: Concerns Regarding the Nordic Aquafarms Land-Based Salmon Farm Project
Free Press - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

I am not in support of the zoning changes needed for the Nordic Aquaculture Salmon Farm at the Little River site on Route 1. This project proposal is being rushed too fast to be able to have accurate, fully fleshed out details on a project so large and which will have such a huge, long-term impact on our environment and our community. ~ Wendy Watson, Belfast
Maine won’t extend its ice fishing season this year
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

In spite of spring conditions that have left many of the state’s lakes and ponds with thick coverings of ice, the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has decided it won’t extend ice fishing season on northern lakes and ponds beyond the end of March.
Longtime warden promoted to landowner relations slot
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

The Maine Warden Service beefed up its commitment to landowner relations recently, as it promoted Dave Chabot to game warden corporal. Chabot joins Cpl. Rick LaFlamme as the second warden in the landowner relations program. Chabot will focus on small landowners, according to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.
Questioning Benefits of Power Transmission Proposal
Public News Service - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

Environmental groups are challenging an electric transmission line proposal that was rejected by New Hampshire and now has been shifted to a route through Maine. The "New England Clean Energy Connect" project would carry power from Hydro-Quebec in Canada to Massachusetts. It replaces the Northern Pass proposal, which was rejected over concerns about environmental damage in the Granite State. According to Dylan Voorhees, climate and energy policy director of the Natural Resources Council of Maine, the impact would be similar in Maine, including fragmenting wildlife habitat by cutting through 50 miles of undeveloped forest.
Kennebec Land Trust receives donation of Ezra Smith Wildlife Conservation Area
Sun Journal - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

Mt. Vernon residents George and Linda Smith have helped Kennebec Land Trust reach the 6,248 acres conserved mark with their donation of the 125-acre Ezra Smith Wildlife Conservation Area Forest in Mt. Vernon. The 125-acre hilly property conserves a 50-acre wetland with a large vernal pool, a well-managed mixed hardwood-conifer forest and a deer wintering area. The extensive undeveloped uplands and wetlands along the Hopkins stream corridor provide wildlife habitat for ducks and wading birds.
Letter: Plastic bag ban a slight inconvenience for real gain
Morning Sentinel - Thursday, March 29, 2018 

Do we, recognizing that a segment of society cannot be bothered with proper disposal of plastic bags, inconvenience ourselves by carrying a canvas tote in and out of the grocery store? The children are watching us as we debate this issue, as their future is hanging in the balance. Also, my 10-year-old canvas tote is now part of my right arm, and I get some exercise out of shopping. ~ Rob Pfeiffer, Solon
The ultimate road trip: America’s quietest roads revealed in pictures
Other - Wednesday, March 28, 2018 

Maine's US Route 201: This 150-mile odd road offers users a greener backdrop tracing the Kennebec River through Maine. The road winds from Gardiner to The Forkers where road trippers can follow the road up into the north woods mountains.
Offshore Winds Enough to Power Maine
Other - Wednesday, March 28, 2018 

Offshore wind power could be the power source for Maine’s clean energy future. Winds blowing off the Maine coast could provide 35.9 times that amount of electricity each year than the state currently uses, according to a report released today by Environment Maine. Even if Maine converted all activities currently powered by gasoline, natural gas and other fossil fuels (like transportation and home heating) to electricity, the energy provided by offshore wind turbines could still produce 13.7 times as much power as they would use.
Nation’s Leading Enviro Groups Want Trump to “Boot Pruitt”
Sierra Club - Wednesday, March 28, 2018 

Only in Donald Trump’s hall-of-mirrors administration would someone so fundamentally opposed to environmental protections and public health be the head of an agency specifically created to protect the environment and public health. And greens have apparently had enough. A united front of the nation’s 10 biggest and most influential environmental organizations launched a multimedia “Boot Pruitt” campaign today to force Scott Pruitt, the administrator of the Environmental Protection Aagency, out of office.
EPA staffers get talking points downplaying human role in climate change
Washington Post - Wednesday, March 28, 2018 

Environmental Protection Agency staffers received a list of “talking points” this week, instructing them to underscore the uncertainties about how human activity contributes to climate change. The email is based on controversial – and scientifically unsound – statements that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has made about the current state of climate research.
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