July 21, 2018  
Announcements               
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

The Future of Snow, Mar 7
Event - Posted - Friday, February 28, 2014 

Porter Fox, author of "DEEP: The Story of Skiing and the Future of Snow," will discuss how will climate change affect snow and the ski industry. At University of Southern Maine, Portland, March 7, 6 pm. Sponsored by Natural Resources Council of Maine.
Of Moose and Main Street, Mar 7
Event - Posted - Friday, February 28, 2014 

Cathy Johnson, Natural Resources Council of Maine North Woods Project Director, and Marsha Donahue, owner of North Light Gallery in Millinocket, will discuss a proposed national park and what it could mean for the environment and the economy of northern Maine. At Hampton Inn, Bath, Mar 7, 4-6 pm.
Reviving the Freedom Mill, Mar 6
Announcement - Thursday, February 27, 2014 

When environmentalist Tony Grassi takes a crazy gamble to rehab an abandoned Mill, he inspires both skepticism and hope that its revived bond with the river will breathe new life into the town of Freedom. Maine Public TV, March 6, 10:15 pm.
Peace, Power, Righteousness: Environmental Stewardship From a Native Perspective, Mar 3
Event - Posted - Monday, February 24, 2014 

A talk by Native American leader and environmental activist Chief Oren Lyons. Lyons is a member of the Onondaga and Seneca nations. He is a Faithkeeper of the Turtle Clan and a chief of the Onondaga Nation Council of Chiefs of the Six Nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. At Bates College, Lewiston, Peter J. Gomes Chapel, March 3, 7 pm.
Meet Your Farmers, Mar 1
Event - Posted - Saturday, February 22, 2014 

A Community Supported Agriculture Fair will be held at the Maine Holistic Center, Bangor, March 1, 1-4 pm.
Reinventing Maine’s Pulp, Paper & Forest Products Industries, Feb 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, February 20, 2014 

Panelists: Donna Cassese, Sappi Fine Paper; Dick Arnold, Old Town Fuel & Fiber; and John Williams, Maine Pulp & Paper Association. At University of Southern Maine, Portland, Feb 27, 7:15 - 9:30 am. Sponsored by E2Tech.
Birding in a Digital Age, Feb 27
Event - Posted - Thursday, February 20, 2014 

Join naturalist Doug Hitchcox to explore spectrograms of bird songs and calls, radar images of birds migrating, an in-depth view of eBird, and a peek at what the future of birding holds. At Gilsland Farm, Falmouth, Feb 27, 7-8 pm. Maine Audubon members $10; non-members $15.
The Art of Katahdin, Feb 26
Event - Posted - Wednesday, February 19, 2014 

Author David Little will present a visual and historic look at one hundred and fifty years of paintings, photos, sketches and little known facts about the peak andsurrounding areas. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, Feb 26, 12:15 pm.
Support the Solar Rebate Program
Action Alert - Tuesday, February 18, 2014 

Maine is the only state in New England without any policies specifically designed to foster solar energy. LD 1252 would re-establish funding for the recently expired Solar Rebate Program that helps homeowners and businesses invest in solar by decreasing the upfront costs. ~ Natural Resources Council of Maine
Bald Eagle Telemetry, Feb 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, February 18, 2014 

Chris Desorbo, a research biologist and the Director of the Raptor Program at the Biodiversity Research Institute in Gorham, will discuss of research efforts focused on Maine’s Bald Eagle population spanning a 30-year period, from early contaminants and tracking studies to current debates over eagle predation on seabird colonies and wind power. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, Feb 25, 7 pm. Sponsored by Merrymeeting Audubon.
White-Tailed Deer: Managing Healthy Herds, Feb 25
Event - Posted - Tuesday, February 18, 2014 

Kyle Revana, Maine State Deer Biologist, will discuss the health and habits of white-tailed deer, and how wintering areas or "deer yards" are important habitats for the long-term survival of Maine's deer populations. At Topsham Public Library, Feb 25, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Mining rules hearing, Feb 24
Action Alert - Monday, February 17, 2014 

The Department of Environmental Protection drafted very weak mining rules and posted them for public hearing last September. Despite overwhelming public testimony supporting stronger rules, the Board of Environmental Protection made DEP’s terrible rules even weaker. Hearing on the proposed new mining rules at Environment and Natural Resources Committee, Cross State Office Building, Augusta, Room 216, Feb 24, 9 am. ~ Natural Resources Council of Maine
Hot Environmental Issues at the State House and Beyond, Feb 24
Event - Posted - Monday, February 17, 2014 

Pete Didisheim, NRCM Senior Director of Advocacy, will provide an insider’s view of efforts to defeat weak mineral mining rules, increase solar energy development, strengthen Maine’s lake protection program, and build support for a new national park and national recreation area east of Baxter State Park. At Univ of Southern Maine, Portland, Glickman Library, 7th floor, Feb 24, 5 pm. Sponsored by Natural Resources Council of Maine.
Maine Master Naturalist Program
Announcement - Sunday, February 16, 2014 

This program provides year-long courses of classroom and field experience to individuals with the goal of conveying both field natural history as well as teaching skills. Deadline March 15.
Solid Waste Policy
Action Alert - Saturday, February 15, 2014 

The Maine Legislature's Environment and Natural Resources Committee is requesting input in updating Maine’s solid waste policies. Deadline is Feb 21 at 5 pm.
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News Items
Volunteers needed for native brook trout posters
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

The Native Fish Coalition, Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine and Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife are seeking volunteers to help post informational signs on Maine’s State Heritage Fish lakes and ponds. The goal of this project is to protect this irreplaceable resource from the introduction of invasive fish, the number one threat to Maine’s wild native brook trout. These signs will let anglers know where they are, the threats to these waters, and what laws are in place to protect them.
Curbside pickup helps turn your table scraps into rich compost
Bangor Daily News - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

ScrapDogs is the newest and most northern of the state’s few residential curbside compost collectors. Garbage to Garden, a Portland-based company that was founded in 2012, picks up compost at homes in Portland, South Portland, Falmouth, Cumberland, Yarmouth, Westbrook, Cape Elizabeth, Brunswick and Bath. We Compost It!, based in Scarborough focuses primarily on commercial compost collection but does do curbside residential pickup in parts of Portland, Brunswick and Kennebunkport and transfer station compost pickup in certain locations. One thing that drives these businesses is the reality that Mainers send a lot of food and organic material to landfills and incinerators.
Opinion: Healthy Lakes: The invisible platoons of conservation
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

Platoons of volunteers, led by experts, have surveyed all the Belgrade Lakes, often more than once. Combined, we are a good-intentioned army fighting the good fight for the future enjoyment of our fellow citizens. Like the military, we used air and “sea” support (aerial photography and boat tours of the lakes). We conservationists are fighting for the boaters, fishermen, and swimmers of today and the future. People love their lakes, and they want to help. Threats to human health are studied, diagnosed, and treated. That’s what conservationists do for the lakes you love. ~ Doug “Woody” Woodsum, Lake Trust
Letter: Losing Maine farmers is not acceptable
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

Maine should make it a priority to support all Maine farmers. They work very hard to provide food and dairy products for our homes and should not be shut out by the callousness of a conglomerate. I am willing to pay extra for Maine farm products if it ensures that the farmers can raise and support their families. I see our farmers out plowing and planting their fields on very hot days, and I see the dairy cows outside and realize how much work it takes to operate a farm. I do not want my milk and farm products coming from out of state. We are losing more Maine farmers each day, and this is not acceptable. ~ Linda L. Allen, Windham
Letter: Mainers called upon to support PRINT Act
Portland Press Herald - Saturday, July 21, 2018 

I urge everyone to call and write to their Maine members of Congress to support a bill called the PRINT Act (H.R. 6031/S.2835) to save the newspaper and publishing industries. President Trump has ordered tariffs on newsprint and publishing, which will cripple both industries, causing newspapers to cut back staff and pages being printed, and send the cost of buying newspapers and books through the ceiling. Sen. Susan Collins has introduced this bipartisan bill, which has 29 co-sponsors, including Sen. Angus King and Rep. Bruce Poliquin. ~ Pat Davidson Reef, Falmouth
Norovirus caused the illnesses that prompted Bridgton to close Woods Pond Beach
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention said norovirus is what made nearly 100 people sick this month after they swam at Woods Pond Beach in Bridgton or had contact with someone who did. Norovirus is a gastrointestinal disease that spreads easily from person to person. People who put their heads under water or swallowed water while swimming were at greater risk of infection, but several people who were not at the beach caught got sick after caring for someone who was ill.
The Lost Forests of New England - Eastern Old Growth
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

A film about New England's ancient, old growth forests...what they once were, what changes have taken place across central New England since European settlers arrived, and what our remnant old growth stands look like today.
Belfast shipyard lands maritime grant
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Front Street Shipyard in Belfast has been awarded a more than half-million dollar grant by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration. The shipyard will put the $667,028 award toward purchase of a machine that “will streamline the construction of custom and production vessels, reducing costs and improving quality of the end-products.” Capable of cutting nearly any material including stainless steel and titanium, the new machine will cut very large parts such as wooden frames for recreational boat molds and carbon fiber panels for commercial ferry construction.
Some in Sanford urged to boil water after pipe break
Journal Tribune - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Customers of the Sanford Water District in the industrial park area are being advised to boil water prior to use because of the possibility of water contamination. Apparently, a contractor working behind the airport in the industrial park accidentally broke a water line and the boil water alert is precautionary.
Trump ups tariff threat, slams Fed, big U.S. trading partners
Associated Press - Friday, July 20, 2018 

President Trump has indicated that he’s willing to hit every product imported from China with tariffs and again criticized the Federal Reserve, as well as some of the nation’s biggest trading partners. The comments sent U.S. markets sliding early Friday. China has retaliated with duties of its own. Beijing is targeting sectors, like [Maine lobsters].
Fish and Wildlife Department Critical of CMP Plan
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has stepped up big time to criticize Central Maine Power’s proposal to construct a massive new transmission line through Maine to move electricity from Quebec to Massachusetts. The good people of New Hampshire rejected CMP’s proposal, so they’ve moved it to Maine. DIFW identified lots of troubling things in CMP’s plan and issued a lengthy list of changes that would have to be made to protect fish and wildlife and the habitats they depend on.
Drilling in Alaska National Wildlife Refuge to get fast review
Washington Post - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Interior Department has commissioned an expedited environmental review of the impact of leasing part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil and gas drilling, according to a document released under the Freedom of Information Act. The nearly $1.7 million contract that Interior signed on April 8 with Colorado-based Environmental Management and Planning Solutions, Inc. shows how rapidly the Trump administration is moving ahead with its plans to open up the refuge’s coastal plain to energy exploration.
Support for the Endangered Species Act remains high as Trump administration and Congress try to gut it
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

The Endangered Species Act, or “the Act,” is arguably the most important law in the United States for conserving biodiversity and arresting the extinction of species. Congress passed the ESA in 1973 with strong bipartisan support at the behest of a Republican president. Since its passage, the Act has helped reverse and stop declines in numerous species and served as a model for similar laws around the world. Nevertheless, the Trump Administration this week proposed to severely curtail the scope of the Act. In contrast to the often-repeated statement that the Act is controversial, these data suggest that support for the law among the general population is robust and has remained so for at least two decades.
How Mainers are working to prevent the coast from losing public access
Bangor Daily News - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Maine Coast Heritage Trust Director of Communications Rich Knox said, “About 1 percent of the coast is open to commercial and public recreational access that’s guaranteed. We’re trying to keep the coast open to people.” Since it was founded in 1970, MCHT has conserved 150,000 acres and 322 islands along the Maine coast, establishing more than 100 public preserves from Kittery to Lubec. All of these preserves are open to the public to visit for free, offering a wide variety of recreational opportunities including camping, hiking, boating and hunting.
Bruce Poliquin backs GOP bid to smother carbon tax
Sun Journal - Friday, July 20, 2018 

U.S. Rep. Bruce Poliquin, a two-term GOP lawmaker from Maine’s 2nd District, joined colleagues Thursday to approve a resolution that insisted a carbon tax “would be detrimental to American families and businesses, and is not in the best interest of the United States.” A near-party-line vote backed the proposal, 229-180. Poliquin was the only representative from New England to back the resolution. Shawn Moody, Maine GOP’s gubernatorial candidate, recently said he thinks a carbon tax “would dramatically increase home heating bills for Mainers, if enacted here.”
Opinion: The truth about mega-biomass
Other - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Concord (NH) Monitor - Gov. Chris Sununu recently extended subsides to the Burgess biomass plant in Berlin another three years. How much could the state accomplish if that $100 million was used to develop low-carbon footprint energy policies, instead of subsidizing wholesale forest destruction in [northern New Hampshire and western Maine] followed by massive carbon emissions from Burgess? ~ Jamie Sayen
Letter: Parking garages are bad for waterfront, traffic, Portland residents
Portland Press Herald - Friday, July 20, 2018 

Developer Jonathan Cohen is asking the city to increase the allowable building height along the eastern Waterfront so his company can erect a 600-car parking garage at 100 Fore St., where Hamilton Marine is presently located. To grant this request would be to allow the permanent desecration of Portland’s beautiful harbor frontage in order to invite in 600 more cars to add to the glut of traffic on Franklin and Commercial streets. Since when do we have to roll over every time a developer sees an opportunity to exploit our waterfront for profit? It’s time to say “no.” ~ Tica Douglas, Portland
Work starts on removal of 200-year-old dam on Sheepscot River
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Work began Thursday to remove a roughly 200-year-old dam in the upper Sheepscot River to improve fish passage while providing the town of Whitefield with a more reliable source of water to fight fires. The removal of the Coopers Mills dam – located roughly a dozen miles east of the State House in Augusta – is part of a three-year, roughly $2 million campaign to improve fish passage in a river within the heart of midcoast Maine that is home to Atlantic salmon, sturgeon, alewives and other sea-run fish. The projects also aim to preserve some of the history surrounding historic dams and mills while enhancing public access.
Column: Some Maine birds are Montana birds too
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

My recent trek took me through South Dakota, Montana, Alberta and Saskatchewan, then back home via all the remaining Canadian provinces between there and here. Traveling is a good chance to get reacquainted with humility. I have a superpower. I know almost every sound a Maine bird can make. However, put me in the Rockies among unfamiliar birds and my powers weaken. It’s kryptonite. But wait. Many Maine birds are also Montana birds. ~ Bob Duchesne
DRA campers explore the Damariscotta River watershed by canoe
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Six campers from Damariscotta River Association’s Camp Mummichog paddled into South Bristol on Friday, July 13 after a four-day canoe trip along the length of the Damariscotta River watershed. The campers learned different paddling strokes and how to handle their canoes under a variety of conditions, such as wind or a strong current. along the way the paddlers spoke with an artist, a harbormaster, and a marine researcher.
Persuasive 2nd-grader prompts Portland to ban plastic straws in City Hall cafe
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Portland has joined the growing backlash against disposable plastic straws by ending their use in the Clock Tower Cafe at City Hall. The move comes the day after a persuasive second-grader from Ocean Avenue Elementary School, Phoebe MacDonald, spoke to the City Council’s Sustainability & Transportation Committee on Wednesday night and urged the city to make the transition.
Endangered Species Act stripped of key provisions in Trump administration proposal
Washington Post - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

The Trump administration unveiled a proposal Thursday that would strip the Endangered Species Act of key provisions, a move that conservationists say will weaken a law enacted 45 years ago to keep plants and animals in decline from going extinct. The proposal would end the practice of extending similar protections to species regardless of whether they are listed as endangered or threatened. In another rollback, the administration wants officials to consider economic impacts when determining how wildlife should be protected.
Class-action Lawsuit Targets Alleged Utility Overbilling
Associated Press - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

A class-action lawsuit aims to recoup alleged overbilling of Central Maine Power customers last winter. The lawsuit filed Thursday adds to the woes for the state's largest electric utility. CMP already is facing dual investigations over complaints of overbilling, one by the Maine Public Utilities Commission and another by an independent auditor. Attorney Sumner Lipman said it's not clear what caused the overcharges but he told reporters that the facts speak for themselves. He said 97,000 customers' bills increased by 50 percent or more, and another 200,000 saw smaller increases up to 50 percent.
Column: Rabies and Red Flags
Times Record - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Summer in Maine used to mean shorts and T-shirts, some sunscreen and insect spray. Now I wear a wide hat, long sleeves and pants tucked into my socks when anywhere ticks or Browntail hairs might be encountered, and a dust mask when mowing the lawn. Such is the new, now mournfully shrimpless, Maine. Until a few years ago my urban Bath yard was never visited by deer or foxes. Now that’s commonplace. I looked up from gardening the other day to lock eyes with a very close and surreally beautiful gray fox. We starred at each other equally surprised at our worlds apart shared proximity, while I tried not to think of rabies. ~ Gary Anderson
BIW, Round Pond firm to pay $447K in EPA settlements
Mainebiz - Thursday, July 19, 2018 

Two Maine companies must pay nearly $500,000 in civil penalties to settle federal complaints that they failed to file required reports about their use of toxic chemicals. Bath Iron Works agreed to pay $355,000 to resolve allegations by the Environmental Protection Agency that the company did not report handling of chromium, copper, manganese and nickel as required by the Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act, according to an EPA news release. The EPA also reported that Masters Machine Co. of Round Pond will pay a $92,210 penalty to settle EPA complaints that it did not submit the required reports for its use of copper during 2013-2015, and for the use of lead in 2014. Masters is a manufacturer of precision aerospace, automotive and electrical components.
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