August 19, 2017  
Announcements               
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

Be a part of a music video and help protect the planet
Announcement - Monday, June 29, 2015 

Friends of the Earth is teaming up with the UN and a group of artists to release "Lovesong to the Earth." The song will be released, for free, as part of a campaign to raise awareness about the climate crisis and International Climate Negotiations coming up later this year in Paris. All you have to do is record yourself, your friends, or even your pets holding signs that read “Keep It Safe” or “Lovesong to the Earth,” then submit the video online.
Film: Last Log Drive Down the Kennebec, Jul 2
Event - Posted - Thursday, June 25, 2015 

Dr. Richard Judd will show rare historical footage of river drivers and the Kennebec's final log drive in 1976. At Maine Maritime Museum, Bath, July , 6:30-8 pm, $5 members; $7 nonmembers.
Making the Best of It, thru Nov 1
Announcement - Wednesday, June 24, 2015 

An exhibit of works by contemporary Maine artists and photographers highlighting the spirit and work ethic of Maine's maritime people. At Maine Maritime Museum, Bath, June 6 - Nov 1.
Global Climate Change and a Shift in Food Production, Jul 1
Event - Posted - Wednesday, June 24, 2015 

Tom Settlemire, Professor Emeritus of Biology and Chemistry at Bowdoin College and past president of the Brunswick Topsham Land Trust, will discuss how Maine has changed from producing nearly 90% of its own food needs as late as the mid 1900s to now providing less than 20%. He will address what global climate change and a focused effort on local farms/food may do to bring more food self-sufficiency to Maine. At Curtis Library, Brunswick, July 1, 7:30 pm. Sponsored by Midcoast Senior College.
State of Our Birds, Jun 30
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 23, 2015 

Doug Hitchcox, owner and moderator of the ‘Maine-birds’ listserv, Audubon’s Staff Naturalist, and eBird reviewer, will share his passion for Maine’s 445 listed species, while discussing the major changes and fluctuations occurring with our avian fauna. At Topsham Public Library, June 30, 6:30 pm. Sponsored by Cathance River Education Alliance.
Maine hikes book signing, Jun 30
Event - Posted - Tuesday, June 23, 2015 

Greg Westrich, author of “Hiking Maine: A Guide to the State’s Greatest Hiking Adventures” and “Best Easy Day Hikes Camden,” will talk about Maine hiking trails at a book signing. At Epic Sports, Bangor, LJune 30, 6-7:30 pm.
Climate change and Arctic landscapes, Jun 29
Event - Posted - Monday, June 22, 2015 

Given the vast area of the Arctic, changes to the biosphere have the potential to influence the atmosphere, thereby altering the rate and magnitude of global climate change. a team of scientists — Zicheng Yu, Lehigh University, David Beilman, the University of Hawaii, and Phil Camill, Bowdoin College — have examined how soil carbon storage and emissions might respond to warming. At Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Visual Arts Center, Beam Classroom, June 29, 7 pm.
Help wanted: Scarborough Marsh Audubon Center
Announcement - Saturday, June 20, 2015 

Maine Audubon is seeking volunteers age 14 and up to help with a variety of tasks at the Scarborough Marsh Nature Center.
Shoreline cleanup in Gouldsboro, Jun 27
Event - Posted - Saturday, June 20, 2015 

Several shoreline cleanups are scheduled this summer by the Gouldsboro Solid Waste Committee, with the first planned for June 27. The targeted areas are the Corea shoreline and waterfront exposed to the ocean, where refuse tends to wash up on shore.
Help Release the Land for Maine’s Future Bonds
Action Alert - Friday, June 19, 2015 

Gov. LePage is holding Land for Maine’s Future bonds hostage as a political bargaining chip. Recently, both the House and Senate voted by over two-thirds in favor of LD 1378, as amended, a bill that would require the Governor to release voter-approved bonds unless there are legitimate, non-political reasons for holding them. The Governor has made clear he will veto LD 1378. It’s critical that two-thirds of the Legislature vote to override the veto and release the LMF bonds. ~ Maine Audubon
Maine Fare, Jun 26-27
Event - Posted - Friday, June 19, 2015 

Maine Fare is a unique food festival that brings everyone to the table — farmers, fishermen, foodies, nonprofits, food businesses, and eaters!– to celebrate a vibrant and delicious future for food, farming, and fishing in Maine. U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree will speak on "Maine's Farming and Fishing Resurgence: Reflections on 40 Years of Island Life." Many other activities. At Belfast, June 26-27.
A New National Park, Jun 25
Event - Posted - Thursday, June 18, 2015 

EPI has proposed to donate up to 150,000 acres for a new National Park and National Recreation Area. NRCM staff will present photos and a film. At Curtis Memorial Library, Brunswick, June 25, 6:30 pm.
Community Activism Celebration, Jun 25
Event - Posted - Thursday, June 18, 2015 

Guest speaker: David Levi, chef-owner of Vinland, “Maine’s Most Radical Restaurant,” which uses 100% locally-sourced ingredients to promote an ethical, local, organic, closed-loop food system. At Rising Tide Brewing Company, Portland, June 25, 6 pm. Sponsored by Toxics Action Center.
Passenger Train Bond
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 17, 2015 

The Maine Legislature is considering a $25 million transportation bond for expanding passenger rail service connecting Portland and Lewiston-Auburn. This investment is an important first step in expanding passenger train service across the state west to Bethel and Fryeburg, and north to Bangor. This bond could leverage up to $100 million in federal matching funds. Please sign this “AddUP” petition to tell Gov. LePage that Mainers want to be able to vote on the passenger rail bond. ~ Sierra Club Maine
Release Land for Maine’s Future Bonds
Action Alert - Wednesday, June 17, 2015 

A bill to release millions of dollars in voter-approved Land for Maine's Future (LMF) funds being held by Gov. LePage has nearly passed both houses of the Maine Legislature. It likely will be enacted, but vetoed by LePage in the coming days. You can encourage legislators to vote to override a veto. Here is a list of pending LMF projects by legislative district.
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News Items
This Q&A Is Top Secret, Contains Leaked Info and Definitely Was Not Peer Reviewed
Moyers & Company - Friday, August 18, 2017 

Climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe reflects on last week's rare 15 minutes of fame for a new 600+ page government report on the state of climate science and it's impact on you and me right now.
Maine's moment in the Sun's eclipse
Down East - Friday, August 18, 2017 

In the autumn of 1961 an inquiry from some farsighted scientists reached the Chamber of Commerce in Bangor, Maine. A forthcoming total eclipse of the sun, it stated, would occur late in the afternoon of July 20, 1963. Within the United States the total eclipse would be visible only over a thin strip of Alaska and along a path 53 miles wide across the middle of Maine. Since Bangor was the largest community within that path.
Editorial: Why you’ll be better off from that trip to the beach
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 18, 2017 

A day at the beach is one of the cherished rites of a Maine summer. Visitors and residents trek to the state’s numerous sandy beaches to splash in the chilly water and soak up the warmth of the sun. Here’s even more reason to make another trip to the beach before summer ends: Being at the ocean can improve your health. Being close to water, especially the waves of the ocean, relieves stress.
First 1-minute hike an eye-opening affair
John Holyoke Out There Blog - Friday, August 18, 2017 

Last week, my colleague, Aislinn Sarnacki, and I headed deep into the woods of Maine, where we spent a couple of days in and around the Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument. When she went on a 1-minute hike, I figured I’d pitch in by finding a nice, shady spot, lying down for a few hours, and taking a nap. But that perfect plan was foiled when Aislinn invited me along on a pair of her hikes. I figured it’d only be polite if I tagged along. And honestly, how hard could they be? They are, after all, just one minute long. Or not.
‘Spectacular’ autumn foliage is forecast for New England
Associated Press - Friday, August 18, 2017 

New England’s fall foliage forecast is looking so fine it’s enough to make a maple leaf blush. For the first time in several years, little has conspired against a truly glorious autumn. There’s no more drought, the summer has been mild and the leaves — largely spared by marauding gypsy moth caterpillars — look healthy. Translation: A pretty great season for leaf peeping seems to be shaping up.
Maine’s biomass bailout bill isn’t helping loggers as much as it was supposed to
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 18, 2017 

Stored Solar LLC disclosed that in the first half of the year, it was only 31 percent of the way toward its year-end wood purchasing goal. It had purchased about 155,300 tons, while promising to purchase at least 500,000 tons by year’s end. The company also fell just short of employment goals. Stored Solar has generated enough power to collect about $1 million in state subsidies but has missed out on about $1.3 million in subsidies intended to make their way to employees of the facilities and, primarily, back into the woods to support loggers hit hard by the decline of Maine’s paper industry. Regulators did not require the second subsidy beneficiary, ReEnergy, to disclose its economic impact figures. ReEnergy has produced nearly all of the power allowed under its subsidy agreement.
New book features a lifetime of hunting and fishing stories
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, August 18, 2017 

My hunting and fishing heritage and experiences have been very important parts of my life, which makes it very exciting to announce the publication of my new book, A Lifetime of Hunting & Fishing, published by North Country Press.
Opinion: Maine’s disastrous new solar rules violate our right to energy independence
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 18, 2017 

Thanks to the actions of a self-proclaimed anti-tax governor, Maine is about to become the first state where electric companies can charge fees for the energy you make and use at your own home or business. This will likely reduce your energy choices and increase energy costs for all Mainers. LD 1504, this session’s so-called “solar bill,” would have banned new fees on the energy consumers generate at home. It also would have lifted barriers to shared projects such as solar farms or community wind or hydro-energy projects. Despite LD 1504 being sponsored by a Republican, amended twice by Republicans, and initially passed with veto-proof majorities in the House and Senate, it failed on the last day of this session. A small minority of Republicans — including seven who flipped their votes — in the House sided with LePage to uphold his veto of the bill. ~ Rep. Seth Berry, D-Bowdoinham, House Chair, Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee
Letter: Tax carbon
Bangor Daily News - Friday, August 18, 2017 

For too long, too many of us have been burying our heads in the sand and ignoring the harmful effects of burning carbon-producing fuels. The Citizens Climate Lobby is urging Congress to take action to begin to reverse the effects of carbon pollution. The group has lobbied every member of Congress to support a tax on carbon-producing fuels. The money collected would be returned to consumers in the form of a dividend. To date, there are 48 bipartisan members of the House who are supporting this initiative. Please write and urge our delegation to take action. ~ Albert Bean, Bangor
370,000 Comments Opposed, 10 Leading Environmental Groups Cite Oil Spill Risks, Danger to Wildlife, Communities and Jobs
Maine Environmental News - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

A coalition of national environmental and conservation groups including the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Sierra Club, Earthjustice, Oceana, League of Conservation Voters, Alaska Wilderness League, Surfrider Foundation, Greenpeace, CREDO Action and the Center for Biological Diversity joined over 370,000 Americans to officially voice their opposition to the move by President Trump to expand offshore drilling. Today marks the end of the 45-day comment period for a new offshore drilling program from 2019-2024.
Opinion: We should be deeply worried about NAFTA
Washington Post - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

If the NAFTA talks that begin this week are an “arena” where nations “compete for advantage,” as the president’s aides have described the president’s “clear-eyed” worldview, and the president’s unchanging and unyielding views on trade are now officially Objective No. 1 — then no one should expect a normal negotiation, and no one should rule out collapse. The winner in all this would be China, no longer competing against a unified and efficient North American manufacturing platform and a gigantic internal market. So just as when Trump pulled us out of the TPP and the Paris climate change accord, the global benefactor may well be the very country against whom Trump directed so much of his campaign rhetoric. ~ Nelson W. Cunningham was a trade and foreign policy adviser in the Clinton White House
$350,000 in Historic State and Tribal Preservation Grants to Maine
Maine Environmental News - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

U.S. Deputy Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt with the National Park Service today announced the distribution of $278,522 in historic preservation grants to Maine as well as $81,356 for historic preservation grants to Micmacs, Passamaquoddies and Penobscots in the state. This funding, part of $25.5 million going to states and tribes across the country today, represents a total of $58 million that the National Park Service has invested in the preservation efforts to every U.S. state this year.
Obama advisor to keynote Maine conservation confab; George Smith to get leadership award
Maine Conservation Voters - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Brian Deese, a Senior Advisor to former President Obama who oversaw climate, conservation, and energy policies, will be the keynote speaker at the annual Evening for the Environment, organized by Maine Conservation Voters. The group also announced Thursday that George Smith will receive the 2017 Environmental Leadership Award. Smith served as executive director of the Sportsman's Alliance of Maine for 18 years. The Evening for the Environment will be held at Thompson's Point in Portland on October 25 at 5:30 pm.
Lawsuit claims Poland Spring a ‘colossal fraud,’ selling groundwater
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

A lawsuit was filed in a Connecticut federal court on Tuesday and accuses Nestle Waters North America, Inc. of a “colossal fraud perpetrated against American consumers.” The civil suit was brought by 11 people from the Northeast who collectively spent thousands of dollars on Portland Spring brand water in recent years. It is seeking millions of dollars in damages for a nationwide class and appears to hinge on whether the sources of Poland Spring water meets the Food and Drug Administration’s definition of a spring. The suit comes as the company, a subsidiary of the Swiss food giant Nestle, is looking to expand its operations in Maine.
Second Town on Mount Desert Island Temporarily Bans Cruise Ships
Maine Public - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

The western side of Mount Desert Island is closer to becoming a cruise-ship-free zone after more than a hundred Southwest Harbor residents unanimously voted Tuesday night to impose a 180-day moratorium against the use of any town facilities by cruise ships. Last year, when the 310-foot-long Pearl Mist arrived in Northeast Harbor, she sparked a local controversy that ended when the Mount Desert Board of Selectmen voted to bar future cruise ship visits. When American Cruise Lines sent out feelers this year about the possibility of anchoring off in nearby Southwest Harbor and shuttling passengers back and forth from a private dock, the location was different — but the reception was the same.
Eastern U.S. most vulnerable to future harmful algal blooms
Summit Voice - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Scientists say it’s all but certain that global warming will increase potentially threatening outbreaks of freshwater algae that can produce toxins dangerous to people and animals. A team lead by Tufts University researcher Steven C. Chapra has developed a modeling framework showing harmful algal blooms will increase the most in the northeastern region of the U.S. The research, published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, is part of larger, ongoing efforts among scientists to quantify and monetize the degree to which climate change will impact and damage various U.S. sectors.
Maine Composting School is the Gold Standard For Turning Garbage Into Treasure
Maine Public - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

A few times a year, people from all over the US — and well beyond — come to Maine to learn the science of all things rotten. The Maine Compost School has been teaching people how to turn organic trash into treasure, and glop into gold, for 20 years, making it the longest running program of its kind in the US. Making a good compost is not for the faint of heart. It involves lots of things that stink, several things that crawl, and trillions of things you can’t even see.
Snakes, ticks and kids: What it’s like to be a camp counselor in Maine
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

I stood nervously in my raincoat and jean shorts watching the campers from Tanglewood 4-H Camp in Lincolnville and swatted a mosquito buzzing near my face. It had been a few years since I’d had to be an authority figure and camp counselor to a group of kids, and I had forgotten how intimidating they could be, despite most of them being a third my age. Maybe it’s the precociousness or that kids, having not developed the self-awareness that comes with age, are exceedingly confident in exactly who they are. Either way, I found myself standing in the woods, wanting to convince the campers at Tanglewood that I was cool. Quickly, I remembered this was a mistake.
LL Bean Boosting Production of Signature Boot
Associated Press - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

L.L. Bean hopes to give the boot to backlogs of its most iconic product. The Maine-based retailer is expanding production to keep up with demand for its leather-and-rubber "duck boot'' with a new manufacturing center being unveiled Thursday. Annual sales have grown from fewer than 100,000 a decade ago to this year's projection of 750,000 pairs. The company hopes to hit the 1 million mark next year. L.L. Bean plans to hire an additional 160 manufacturing workers in Lewiston and Brunswick.
Maine company seeks to produce innovative wood-fiber insulating boards
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Maine’s glut of softwood fiber created by closed paper mills makes the state an ideal location for a factory that can produce insulation board from wood, a Belfast architectural and construction firm says, and it’s trying to find a European manufacturer that shares that vision. GO Logic, which specializes in energy-efficient buildings, says it’s negotiating with undisclosed companies that make wood-based insulation board in Europe, where the product already is in commercial use. The goal is to have a plant operating here within two years.
New CMP bills foreshadow increased consumer involvement
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Central Maine Power customers will receive bills next month with a new format, one that is designed to make it easier to compare their past and current electrical use. While the changes are modest, the redesign will eventually be integrated into what could be an extreme makeover in how customers are billed. A long-awaited technology upgrade for CMP’s billing system soon will let the utility charge customers different rates based on when they are using electricity.
Commentary: In the end, Mainers will reject regulators’ anti-clean-energy rule
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

I’ve been asked many times: What happened to this year’s solar bill? Despite overwhelming public support, on the last day of our legislative session, a bill protecting Mainers’ ability to create local jobs and clean energy fell short by just three votes. We lost, but job-creating, local, clean energy will win in the end because the “triple wins” of rooftop solar (local jobs, clean energy and ratepayer savings) remain clear to most legislators and certainly our constituents. We chafe at our dependence on an expensive and centralized grid, which transmits our dollars out of state to the shareholders of multinational electricity monopolies and huge oil and gas companies. ~ Rep. Seth Berry (D), Bowdoinham, House chair, Energy, Utilities and Technology Committee
Letter: Mainers must demand cap on greenhouse gases
Portland Press Herald - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Richard Nelson’s Aug. 9 commentary, “Maine Voices: State’s balking at new cap on greenhouse gases threatens our fishing heritage,” should instill pride and determination in Mainers, including your governor. Mr. Nelson argues convincingly for more ambitious caps. I’m a Floridian, loving my second summer here. Our governor, Rick Scott, has a lot in common with Gov. LePage. As long as fossil fuels are the cheapest source of power, warming seas and climate debacles will continue to escalate. Florida may be known as the Sunshine State, but it’s becoming the sinking state. United, we can curb the dire predictions and ensure our children a livable planet. ~ Jeffrey Dorian, Crestview, Fla.
Letter: Disparaging to lobster industry
Bangor Daily News - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

I read with dismay the Aug. 14 BDN article, “What it’s like to kill hundreds of lobsters a day.” This story contains factual inaccuracies and was disparaging to the thousands of men and women of the Maine lobster industry. According to several studies, and the Maine Lobster Institute’s Robert Bayer, the lobster’s primitive nervous system is most similar to that of an insect. Lobsters react to sudden stimulus, like twitching their tails when placed in boiling water, but they don’t have complex brains to process pain like humans and other animals do. ~ Matt Jacobson, Maine Lobster Marketing Collaborative
Letter: The case for paper bags
Sun Journal - Thursday, August 17, 2017 

Why not go back to paper bags? They self-destruct and trees are a renewable, sustainable resource. There are a lot of them in Maine. There are still some paper mills and lots of experienced workers. Paper can be a used as mulch, even bedding for animals. ~ Suzanne Bottomley
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Natural Resources Council
of Maine

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An Interview with Roxanne Quimby: Philanthropist, Conservationist, and Businesswoman

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In the End, Mainers Will Reject Regulators’ Anti-clean-energy Rule

The PUC tax on energy produced and used in the home will take effect as an election approaches. by Seth Ber...

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Clean Stainless Steel, Naturally

A solution of one quart warm water and three tablespoons baking soda makes a great stainless steel cleaner....

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Groups File Brief Challenging Maine’s New Solar Rules

The filing appeals the Public Utilities Commission’s new solar rules in the wake of a failed legislat...

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Belfast Becomes Latest City to Ban Plastic Bags, Polystyrene

By Nick McCrea, BDN Staff Bangor Daily News news story BELFAST, Maine — Paper or canvas? Shoppers in Belfas...

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