December 15, 2017  
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Maine Environmental News
Announcement - Wednesday, December 13, 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 over 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
Maine Energy Planning Roadmap hearings, Dec 19, Dec 29, Jan 10
Event - Posted - Tuesday, December 12, 2017 

The Governor’s Energy Office is asking Mainers for input in developing an Energy Planning Roadmap. Public hearings:
• Dec. 19: University of Southern Maine, Portland
• Dec. 29: Energy, Utilities, & Technology Committee, Augusta
• Jan. 10: University of Maine, Presque Isle
Help wanted: Visitor Center Assistant
Announcement - Monday, December 11, 2017 

Seasonal position, May 1 - October 31, 2018, representing Audubon’s Seabird Restoration Program at the Project Puffin Visitor Center in Rockland.
Free Skiing & Learn-to-Ski Clinics, Dec 16
Event - Posted - Saturday, December 9, 2017 

Waterville Parks & Rec, with support from Friends of Quarry Road, will provide free trail passes, free rentals, and free learn-to-ski clinics at Quarry Road Trails, December 16.
Meadow Brook/Hurds Pond Preserve Hike, Dec 16
Event - Posted - Saturday, December 9, 2017 

Cloe Chunn will lead a hike of Meadow Brook/Hurds Pond, a preserve of Coastal Mountains Land Trust. Meet at Swanville Transfer Station, December 16, 10 am. Sponsored by Belfast Bay Watershed Coalition.
Tax bill would slam the brakes on solar and wind energy
Action Alert - Friday, December 8, 2017 

The tax bill passed by the Senate last Friday includes an obscure provision that could pull the rug out from under solar and wind power. The House version also takes aim at renewable energy by rolling back key tax credits. These provisions "would have a devastating ... impact on wind and solar energy," according to renewable energy industry leaders. ~ Environment Maine
Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument, Dec 14
Event - Posted - Thursday, December 7, 2017 

Tim Hudson, Superintendent, will take you through the landscape of Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument with pictures. At Belfast Free Library, December 14, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Belfast Bay Watershed Coalition.
Whales of the Gulf of Maine: A Naturalist’s Report, Dec 14
Event - Posted - Thursday, December 7, 2017 

Zack Klyver, chief naturalist for the Bar Harbor Whale Watch Company and founder of Flukes whale watch ecotours, will present an engaging review of the 2017 whale watch season. At Schoodic Institute, Winter Harbor, December 14, 12 pm.
Olive oil tasting, Dec 13
Event - Posted - Wednesday, December 6, 2017 

FIORE Artisan Olive Oils & Vinegars will host an evening to support the Brunswick Topsham Land Trust at its tasting room in Brunswick, December 13, 5-7 pm.
The Arctic Needs Your Help
Action Alert - Tuesday, December 5, 2017 

Buried deep within the Senate tax bill is a provision to open the pristine Arctic Refuge, a national treasure, to oil and gas drilling, which will cause widespread pollution and harm to the wildlife and people who call this place home. Express your disappointment to Senator Susan Collins and urge her to protect our natural legacy by working to remove this damaging language before the tax bill becomes law. ~ Maine Conservation Voters
Birds from the Footbridge in Belfast, Dec 9
Event - Posted - Saturday, December 2, 2017 

Join Ron Harrell and Gary Gulezian to watch ducks, loons and other birds in the harbor. At the Belfast Footbridge, December 9, 8-10 am. Organized by Belfast Bay Watershed Coalition.
Win $1,000 L.L.Bean shopping spree and an outing with David Sibley
Announcement - Friday, December 1, 2017 

Wildlife Acoustics, makers of the Song Sleuth bird identifying app, launched the Sibley Sweepstakes on December 1. Ends March 1. No purchase necessary to enter.
Baxter State Park sign auction, ends Dec 6
Announcement - Thursday, November 30, 2017 

Auction of retired Baxter State Park signs, plus the historic dinner bell from Kidney Pond Camps. Friends Baxter State Park will donate half the proceeds to Baxter State Park, and half will support FBSP programs. Ends December 6.
Blazing Ahead: the Rivalry that Built the Appalachian Trail, Dec 7
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 30, 2017 

Jeffrey Ryan tells the story of the unlikely creation of the Appalachian Trail. At Bangor Public Library, December 7, 6 pm. Sponsored by Appalachian Mountain Club Maine Chapter.
Celebrate CREA and the Season, Dec 7
Event - Posted - Thursday, November 30, 2017 

Meet new Executive Director Wendy Van Damme, hear about new programs and plans, and contemplate the joy of winter activity at the Cathance River Education Alliance’s 235 acre nature preserve in Topsham. At Frontier Cafe, Brunswick, December 7, 4:30 to 6:30 pm, RSVP.
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News Items
Extinction rate is accelerating, scientists say
Other - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Philadelphia Inquirer - We humans can be so destructive that some scientists believe we’ve now triggered a mass extinction – one that in several hundred years will rival the asteroid impact that killed the dinosaurs. In some places, a mass extinction is already under way. There’s plenty of evidence that the sixth mass extinction has begun, said biologist Stuart Pimm, chair of conservation ecology at Duke University. “We are clearly living in an era where we’re driving species to extinction 100 to 10,000 times faster than they should be going extinct,” he said.
Editorial: Cape Cod seashore holds lessons for North Woods park plan
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Fifty years ago President John Kennedy signed the law creating the Cape Cod National Seashore, which preserved 44,000 acres and 40 miles of shoreline on the outer reaches of an environmentally fragile, yet universally attractive peninsula. Today, that stroke of President Kennedy’s pen is seen as evidence of a clear vision. Yet like the proposed North Woods National Park in Maine, at the time, the seashore designation was not seen as a slam-dunk victory among locals. A Maine North Woods Park would not draw the same numbers, or the same sorts of people the Cape Cod seashore does. But the streams, rivers, ponds and lakes of the Katahdin region also have their lure. Whether towns like Millinocket would be blessed by being a gateway to a park is an open question. A Cape Codder editorial 50 years ago offered some sage advice: “If the remaining area of towns goes to the devil it will because the towns themselves failed to take the necessary preventive steps.”
Group works to make NH a golden state for rare bird
Other - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

In the 1960s, Rawson Wood began to notice an alarming silence and was afraid New Hampshire loons would eventually disappear the way they did in Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts in the 19th century. So, Wood established the Loon Preservation Committee in 1975, the first organized group to try to study and preserve loons in North America. Maine has more loons than any other state in the Northeast, with estimates putting the total at more than 5,000.
New Jersey fuels cap-and-trade flap
Associated Press - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

New Jersey's expected pullout from a 10-state pact to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is among the latest developments in a nationwide dispute over whether cap-and-trade programs work and what limitations states should place on energy producers to curb the heat-trapping gases blamed for global warming. At the crux of the debate is an irony that those with competing priorities are unlikely to resolve: In order for cap-and-trade to be effective, it must come at a price -- an added operating cost for energy producers, who then pass it on to customers.
Opinion: Feeling tasked by all these studies
Sun Journal - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

We are now six months into the LePage administration. While the governor has produced some solid accomplishments in non-sportsmen areas, a couple of recent developments at DIF&W have a deja-vu-all-over-again look that is unsettling. Forming committees and task forces to conduct studies is easy. Taking meaningful action is always the real challenge. The ultimate irony is that many of the same people who are serving on Commissioner Woodcock's study groups are the same people who served on similar study groups of the former DIF&W commissioner.


Revival of fishing boils down to lobsters
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

If nothing else, Norm Olsen's abrupt resignation as commissioner of the Department of Marine Resources has shed light on the plight of the state's groundfishing industry and the challenges -- and politics -- involved with reviving it. Gov. Paul LePage and DMR officials see potential in Maine's groundfishing industry, which has waned in recent years. The state's groundfishing industry wants to change Maine law to permit lobster by-catch, letting fishermen sell lobsters caught up in their nets. But that prospect is loathed by most of Maine's lobster industry, one of the biggest cogs in the state's economy.
Tackling Maine's pike problem
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Northern pike were first reported in Pushaw Lake in 2003. Every year since 2006, the lake has been netted in the spring and all the northern pike captured are killed in an effort to thwart this non-native fish, which can eat a landlocked salmon whole. State biologists feel the time has come for serious measures. A proposal has gone to the Maine Attorney General's office to allow for a catch-and-kill regulation in the Penobscot River drainage. A new concern to some biologists is what will happen when the dams are affixed with fish passageways -- part of the Penobscot Restoration Project effort to bring back the sea-run fish. But the effort to restore sea-run fish to the Penobscot will benefit the river's ecosystem, said Laura Rose Day, executive director of the Penobscot River Restoration Trust. That restoration effort, supported by a large team of state and federal fish and wildlife agencies, has considered the threat of pike, Day said.
'Our garden is our North Maine Woods'
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

With two-thirds of the state covered with trees, most of it working forestland, Maine's identity is rooted in its trees, its woodland life, its logging history and the relationships between them all. Greenville has been celebrating this for 20 years, and in two weeks Forest Heritage Days again will highlight all the reasons to love a landscape of trees. Heritage Days chairwoman Elaine Bartley said the take-home message from the event is that the logging industry is not about "wiping out the trees" but preserving the forestland.
Opinion: Nothing beats a fresh broiled mackerel
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Many years ago, my Aunt Vivian asked me to stay for lunch because she was serving mackerel that her son, Ray, had caught that morning. I was 18 years old and gladly accepted the invitation because I liked eating this delicious fish fresh from the ocean. Right at mid-meal that day, though, I decided "liked" didn't describe my feelings strongly enough. I loved pigging out on mackerel and have ever since. ~ Ken Allen, Belgrade Lakes
Opinion: Successful commissioners master a precarious balancing act
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

There are two sides to every story, and in the case of the recent resignation of Norm Olsen, commissioner of the Department of Marine Resources, I don't know more than what has been reported in the news. What I know is that all governors begin their terms believing they bring a unique, fresh perspective to governing and that all who came before them were wrong-headed. All governors will learn that as CEO of state government, they will have to pay attention to issues that never arose during a campaign, and they must rely on the institutional knowledge of a state agency to solve them. It's often commissioners who must bring this potentially unwelcome perspective to a new chief executive. ~ Kay Rand
Editorial: Governor discredited by his own anti-media tirade
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Gov. LePage had a chance to clear the air with the city of Portland and the struggling groundfishing industry Thursday. Before he even sat down with Portland Mayor Nicholas Mavodones, however, LePage decided to use the moment in a way that lent credence to a criticism of him -- that he is a bully, who lacks the character and discipline to carry out the complicated task of leading the state. His target this time was not Portland, but the news media. If the point of his diatribe was to discredit the media for publishing charges made by outgoing Commissioner of Marine Resources Norman Olsen, the governor failed miserably. He showed himself, as he has all too often, to be a thin-skinned hypocrite who views anyone who disagrees with him as an enemy.
Letter: Turbines – noise
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

The wind industry needs to respect the rights of those who by happenstance live nearby. People have the right to an environment that is not compromised in terms of health and property value devaluation because of excessive noise from these machines. The more conservative noise levels should be approved by the Board of Environmental Protection. ~Norman Kalloch, Carrying Place Town Twp.
Letter: Turbines – fire?
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

The recent letter to the editor suggesting that flaming shards of wind turbines would ignite forest fires ("Real danger to forests is broken wind turbines," July 17) is so misleading and uninformed it cries out for a response. There are about 175 commercial-size wind turbines operating in Maine now. Not a single one has caught fire or thrown flaming turbine shards into the woods. And there is no evidence to suggest these modern turbines are prone to doing so. ~ Kirk Wood, West Gardiner
Letter: Turbines – view
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

In the June 26 Telegram, a story about Washington County's guides complaining about the possibility of a wind farm destroying their fishing experience included a statement from visitors who said, "we can see industry in Massachusetts." Then in the Outdoors section was a piece about fishermen in front of the Upper Dam At Mooselookmegundic, an industrial view that doesn't seem to be too bothersome. Offering conflicting points of view is good journalism. ~ Dave Shaw, Sidney
Goose Rocks: Test of public, private rights
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

Two dozen Kennebunkport beachfront landowners sued the town in the fall of 2009 in response to the town's assertion that the private owners had no enforceable right to limit public use of the beach in front of their homes. The town claims that the beach has been public property since the 1680s, and that it has the Colonial-era documents to prove it. If that argument fails to persuade Justice G. Arthur Brennan in York County Superior Court, town officials also argue that the beach is public property because the public has earned a permanent recreational easement, by virtue of using the beach for centuries.
Can you get to the beach?
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

The battle for access, according to coastal resource experts, beachgoers and people who work at the beaches, is more intense than ever. Maine boasts the longest tidal coastline in the nation, with 3,500 miles. But only about 30 miles of that -- less than 1 percent -- is made up of publicly owned sand beaches. Privately owned beachfront makes up another fraction of the total, although state officials don't have an estimate of that amount. The vast majority of the shoreline is rockbound. Another challenge is simply finding beaches that are publicly owned or otherwise open to the public.
Project under way to create beach access guide
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, July 31, 2011 

There's no comprehensive guide, either online or in print, to the coastal beaches in Maine that are open to the public. But that's about to change, thanks to a project by the Maine Coastal Program. The program is developing a coastal access guide, which will include detailed information about well-known and lesser-known beaches, costs, parking, and facilities.
Retired UM professor takes readers along Appalachian Trail
Sun Journal - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

David B. Field, a retired University of Maine professor of forest resources, has written a book about Maine's Appalachian Trail, a part of the state he knows very well. He should after maintaining six miles of the scenic trail for 54 years and serving as an officer of the Maine Appalachian Trail Club and on the board of managers of the Appalachian Trail Conference.
Quimby rep unfazed by Millinocket leaders’ opposition to park
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

Opposition from the Millinocket Town Council to environmentalist Roxanne Quimby’s plan to give 70,000 acres she owns to form a national park, or to a study of that proposal’s feasibility, doesn’t much faze her land manager. “Right now my reaction is that the glass is still half full. The Katahdin Area Chamber of Commerce, 100 businesses in the region, voted unanimously to support a study,” said Mark Leathers of the James Sewall Co. on Friday as he listed various Katahdin region governmental and civic groups that also supported a study.
Opinion: Republicans took initiative in Augusta to make changes that counted
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

After a select legislative committee working on L.D. 1 finished its tour of the state, listening to business owners, farmers, fisherman, employers and other regular Mainers, we crafted legislation to start dismantling unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles while maintaining reasonable safeguards, reducing paperwork and streamlining procedures. Republican chairs worked hard to find common ground on this legislation, which ultimately passed with overwhelming bipartisan support. However, the regulatory reform process would never have gotten out of the gate without Republican leadership. ~ Rep. Andre Cushing, R-Hampden
Letter: We should be happy there are farms to smell
Morning Sentinel - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

We live just down the road from the largest dairy farm in the state that has several hundred head of cows. We moved to this home on the river knowing full well of the consequences; the odors, the farm equipment traffic and all that goes with it. We embrace the fact that we live in this area of the state where farming is strong and thriving. ~ Jean and John Jones, Clinton
Opinion: Exploit New England's Renewable Energy
Other - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

Hartford Courant - New England is blessed with bountiful on- and offshore wind, solar energy resources and an emerging smart energy industry that is making our energy use more efficient. Development of these resources will not only meet the renewable energy goals of the New England states, but also provide a welcome source of future economic development and thousands of jobs. What we need is a coordinated regional plan — not individual states acting in silos — to optimize our energy potential.
Retired UM professor takes readers along Appalachian Trail
Sun Journal - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

David B. Field, a retired University of Maine professor of forest resources, has written a book about Maine's Appalachian Trail, a part of the state he knows very well. The Appalachian Trail was extended through Maine, thanks to Maine native Myron H. Avery who brought together friends from Washington, D.C., personnel with the Maine forest and warden service, guides and sporting camp operators, and the Civilian Conservation Corps. This happened, despite questions of whether it would be possible to carve a trail through the state’s wildlands. "Images of America: Along Maine’s Appalachian Trail" is published by Arcadia Publishing.
Maine game chief says big deer here
Associated Press - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

Maine is known for its big deer, and Chandler Woodcock wants everybody to know that they're out there. Just not everywhere. But he's attending to that. As the head custodian of all wild things that live on Maine's land and in its fresh waters, Woodcock is leading efforts to restore the state's cherished big game animal, which once roamed in greater abundance. Those efforts include some drastic measures, including limited night hunting of coyotes.
Letter: A healthy community
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, July 30, 2011 

The North Woods is no place for dirty energy. Solar, hydro and wind development would create jobs, lower energy costs and put us on the forefront of alternative energy technology. Our small towns are already set up to deliver independent energy services. Without a healthy planet, none of us can thrive. ~ Lisa Laser, Dover-Foxcroft
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