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: Open Season
Ellsworth American - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

Daren Worcester has written a wonderfully authentic book that is anything but a recycle of warden stories that we have already seen on TV or read before. “Open Season” contains 20 real-life stories as told to Worcester by 12 different wardens, most of them retired. Published by Downeast Books, “Open Season” is a must read for anyone who likes warden stories, or for that matter, anyone curious about what it is exactly that game wardens do, especially when things don’t go as planned. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Kennebec Messalonskee Trails walk organizers want to send a message
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

Kennebec Messalonskee Trails has been conducting community walks on first weekend in June to celebrate National Trails Day since 2000. But this year, the organization wanted the walk to send a message. Peter Garrett, past president of group and board members said the goal of the walk is to bring people together, to put aside their differences – whether they be political, religious or social – and talk to each other.
KELT awarded grant to help monitor bird habitat
Maine Environmental News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

The Kennebec Estuary Land Trust in Bath will use a $5,000 grant to expand bird monitoring programs in the region. The land trust, based in Bath, has earmarked grant funds to expand and strengthen a bird monitoring program on its preserves in the region.
Climate change, the Paris agreement and the U.S.: The facts
Portland Press Herald - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

A guide to what's in the Paris agreement, what's going on with global warming, and what might happen if the rest of the world keeps fighting man-made climate change with the U.S. on the sidelines.
Trump Administration Aims to Open More Arctic Areas for Oil
Bloomberg News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke has issued a directive aimed at spurring oil and natural gas development in Alaska. Zinke’s order compels a rewrite of a 2013 plan that limited oil and natural gas development in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. President Donald Trump already has proposed raising $1.8 billion over the next decade by opening up parts of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil and gas development.
Mainers want signs for national monument
Maine Environmental News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

Gov. Paul LePage has blocked signs along Interstate 95 and Maine Routes 11, 157, and 159 directing visitors to the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. On May 20, the Bangor Daily News posted an online poll. As of May 31, at 4 p.m., the response was a resounding yes, the State should put up directional signs for the national monument. Out of 1,417 respondents, more than three-quarters (76.71%) said yes.
New England’s last big coal plant is shutting down
Associated Press - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

New England’s largest – and one of its last – coal-fired power plants is shutting down permanently. The owner of the Brayton Point Power Station says it will cease operating Wednesday. The plant has generated electricity since the 1960s along Mount Hope Bay in Somerset, Massachusetts, near the Rhode Island border. It’s been cited by federal regulators as one of the region’s heaviest polluters.
Maine lawmakers Consider Copyrighting Public Meeting Audio
Associated Press - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

A little-known group of legislators in Maine is fearful of political groups twisting statements that lawmakers and the public make in committee hearings. The lawmakers have spent the last year mulling what to do with mounting requests for audio recordings of such hearings. Republican Sen. Garrett Mason says it's not appropriate for members of the public to have their testimony recorded forever. A Legislative Council committee is currently considering adding a copyright or disclaimer to the recordings to keep them from being used out of context. But critics called the idea self-serving and unprecedented.
ExxonMobil fails to fend off shareholder rebellion over climate change
Washington Post - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

ExxonMobil failed to fend off a shareholder rebellion over climate change, as investors with 62.3 percent of shares voted to instruct the oil giant to report on the impact of global measures designed to keep climate change to 2 degrees centigrade.
Tick-borne Powassan virus sickens two residents in midcoast Maine
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

Two residents of midcoast Maine are recovering from the Powassan virus, a life-threatening but rare illness spread by a tick bite. The two infections bring Maine’s case count for Powassan to nine since 2000. The virus claimed the life of a Rockland-area artist in late 2013. Powassan is spread by the bite of an infected deer or woodchuck tick. In addition to the potentially debilitating symptoms, Powassan has been shown to spread from tick to human in under an hour.
Trump Has Multiple Escape Routes From Paris Climate Accord
National Public Radio - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

President Trump is nearing a decision on whether to formally withdraw the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement — a landmark deal in which nearly every country volunteered to curb its greenhouse gas emissions in an effort to limit global warming. Various news outlets have reported that Trump has already made the decision to withdraw. But the president is doing his best to maintain suspense. For all its symbolic importance, the decision may have little practical effect on U.S. carbon emissions. Trump has already taken steps to reverse many of the Obama administration's rules designed to cut carbon pollution. Those moves make it unlikely the U.S. will meet its Paris commitment in any case. If Trump does decide to pull out, he has a number of options.
Meet the people telling Trump to ditch our last, best hope at avoiding climate catastrophe
Climate Progress - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

President Donald Trump will reportedly soon announce he plans to exit the Paris climate agreement, humanity’s last, best hope of avoiding catastrophic climate change. Leaving the Paris climate deal could be Trump’s biggest blunder to date, from a historical and personal perspective. It would simultaneously weaken his presidency and ruin his brand. It would give him a Neville Chamberlain or Richard Nixon level of historical notoriety — all to destroy a global deal that requires minimal effort by us to fulfill.
Things to do in Acadia if you have knee problems?
Acadia On My Mind Blog - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

The highlight of any trip to Bar Harbor has to be a tour of Acadia National Park. The 27-mile scenic Park Loop Road includes stops at the top of Cadillac Mountain, Sand Beach, Thunder Hole, Otter Point, Jordan Pond, Wild Gardens of Acadia, and other places to take in the views. You don’t need to do much hiking to enjoy these spots, as there are short easy walkways and plenty of roadside pullouts with explanatory wayside exhibits.
Opinion: Finding freedom in the mountains of Maine
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

We need to remove the barriers so everyone can live in freedom. By “freedom,” I mean freedom from disease and oppression, freedom to experience nature as we know it (which requires acknowledging and ending global warming), freedom to live and love and learn without fear of state-sanctioned violence, among many other expansive and empowering freedoms. As I do what I can to work for not only equality, or even simply for j ustice, but for liberation, I’m fueled by the belief that everyone should get to feel as free as I do when I spend time in the mountains of Maine. ~ Heather Denkmire, Portland
Trump plans to pull U.S. out of Paris climate deal, White House official says
Associated Press - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

President Trump is expected to pull the United States from a landmark global climate agreement, a White House official said Wednesday, though there could be “caveats in the language." Exiting the deal would be certain to anger allies that spent years negotiating the accord to reduce carbon emissions. Nearly 200 nations, including the U.S., agreed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions in an effort to combat climate change. Withdrawing would leave the U.S. aligned only with Russia among the world’s industrialized economies in rejecting action to combat climate change. The U.S. is the world’s second largest emitter of carbon, following China. Beijing, however, has reaffirmed its commitment to meeting its targets under the Paris accord, canceling construction of about 100 coal-fired power plants and investing billions in massive wind and solar projects.
Trump pulling U.S. out of Paris climate deal
Reuters - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

U.S. President Donald Trump has decided to withdraw from the Paris climate accord, Fox News and other news outlets reported Wednesday. Trump, who has previously called global warming a hoax, refused to endorse the landmark climate change accord at a summit of the G7 group of wealthy nations on Saturday. The decision could have sweeping implications for the deal, which relies heavily on the commitment of big polluter nations to reduce emissions of gases scientists blame for sea level rise, droughts and more frequent violent storms.
Boating season is here
Maine Government News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

The Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands has been working hard to prepare for the upcoming boating season. Maintenance crew members have been putting out floats and completing spring clean-up at boat launches, while crews from the Navigational Aids program are checking the condition and location of hundreds of navigational markers and bouys across the state. For more information on the location of public boat launches and navigation aids see the bureau's website.
Legislature kills lots of deer bills
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

Legislators had lots of ideas about how to improve deer hunting, from allowing baiting to letting kids shoot does anywhere anytime to protecting small bucks. But the bills didn’t get much support from the legislature’s Fish and Wildlife Committee and they were all killed by the House and Senate.
Letter: Juniper Ridge hearing
Bangor Daily News - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

On June 1, the Board of Environmental Protection will make its final decision on the expansion of the Juniper Ridge Landfill. This would be the first standalone expansion permit to be granted to this landfill. Until now, this already gigantic facility has been operated solely under the original permit that was given to the Old Town paper mill in 1993. After June 1, either the state will begin to get a grip on its waste problems or it will be open to filling this landfill to a 30-million cubic yard capacity over 30 years. The public is welcome to attend the meeting on June 1 in Augusta. ~ Paul Schroeder, Orono, and Ed Spencer, Old Town
Letter: Plenty of reasons to support solar
Morning Sentinel - Wednesday, May 31, 2017 

I am writing to ask our community to support L.D. 1373. There are so many reasons to support the development of solar energy: 1. It’s the future of energy globally and Maine should be on the cutting edge. 2. It could become an economic driver in Maine. 3. What is a better form of this than citizens having more control over their energy source? 4. L.D. 1373 has a fee to solar users to defray the cost of maintaining the power lines. ~ Emanuel Pariser, Waterville
With Trump, A Full-Scale Assault on Protections for U.S. Public Lands
Other - Tuesday, May 30, 2017 

Yale e360 - With a series of actions – including proposals to de-authorize recently created national monuments and open environmentally sensitive lands to fossil-fuel development – the Trump administration is moving to overturn long-standing U.S. policies on protecting the nation’s public lands.
Even as Wind Power Rises, It Falls Under a Political Cloud
New York Times - Tuesday, May 30, 2017 

Wind farms, with their rapid geographic spread and technological advances, are reshaping the electric system, defying skepticism that they are steady or reliable enough to displace conventional power plants. Now politics, not skepticism, may be wind power’s biggest barrier. Under new leadership with ties to conventional energy interests, the Energy Department is scrambling to complete an internal study in the next month that could lead to an upending of the policies that fostered the rapid spread of solar and wind.
Trump could deal fatal blow to climate deal
Washington Post - Tuesday, May 30, 2017 

Donald Trump wasn’t exaggerating when he said during his election campaign that the U.S. could “cancel” the Paris Accord on climate change. A decision due from the president this week on whether to pull the U.S. out of the deal involving almost 200 nations could have a domino effect on the participation of other countries in limiting fossil-fuel pollution, making it almost impossible and extremely expensive to stop catastrophic climate change. That’s the conclusion of researchers and scientists evaluating the impact of Trump on the health of the climate.
Appalachian Trail Hikers After 500 Miles: 'We Feel Great'
Maine Public - Tuesday, May 30, 2017 

Since April, Maine Public has been following the journey of two Mainers thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail — Danny Moody of Winthrop, and Dan Giguere of Manchester, Maine. Danny, trail name "Bubba," and Dan, trail name "Lieutenant," are hiking the trail with Danny’s dog Daisy, no trail name, from its origin in Georgia to its end, at Mount Katahdin. They’ve traveled about 500 miles, and are about a quarter of the way to Katahdin. Danny and Dan are expecting to reach Katahdin in mid-September. But, Danny says, “You get there when you get there.”
‘I Give the Governor Credit’ — LePage Lauded for Prisoner Commutations
Maine Public - Tuesday, May 30, 2017 

Gov. Paul LePage took to the airwaves of WVOM Tuesday morning to defend his decision to release 17 nonviolent male prisoners deemed to be at low risk of re-offending. LePage said he commuted their sentences as a way to help address the state’s growing labor shortage.
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