June 25, 2019  
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Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

“Birding by Ear" Presentation in Grand Lake Stream July 17
Press Release - Thursday, July 10, 2008 

Downeast Lakes Land Trust will continue its ongoing “History & Heritage” series of educational community events with a presentation by Bob Duchesne on “Birding By Ear” on Thursday, July 17, 2008, at the Grand Lake Stream Town Building on Water Street.
Maine Audubon Loon Count Celebrates 25 Years
Publication - Tuesday, July 8, 2008 

On Saturday, July 19, over 800 volunteers will survey Maine's lake and ponds for loons in Maine Audubon's 25th annual Loon Count. Volunteers are still needed for this year's count.
Solar Mower talk at F.W. Horch
Event - Posted - Thursday, July 3, 2008 

On Thursday, July 10, at 7 pm, Guy Marsden will be at F.W. Horch Sustainable Goods & Supplies in Brunswick to demonstrate how to remove the gasoline motor from a lawn mower and replace it with an electric motor and a battery, which can then be charged with solar panels. Converting a gas mower to solar is featured as one of "Ten Audacious Ideas to Save the Planet" in the July 2008 issue of Popular Science Magazine.
Maine Audubon Executive Director Appointed to Pacific Peace Corps Post
Press Release - Tuesday, July 1, 2008 

Maine Audubon, the state’s largest wildlife conservation organization, will soon begin a search for an executive director to succeed Kevin Carley of Cumberland.
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News Items
CMP misled the public, mismanaged rollout of new billing system
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

An investigation reveals that layers of Central Maine Power management misjudged the enormity of changing over to a new billing system, leaving thousands of angry and frustrated customers.
Their stories: 12 CMP customers take defiant, desperate measures
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

More than 100,000 Central Maine Power residential and commercial customers were victims of the power company’s billing system fiasco. CMP won’t comment on individual disputes, but has said the number of complaints has leveled off. For many customers, however, the nightmare continues. Here are some of their stories.
A fish-crazed Mainer points us toward some of the best spots to land stripers
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

Despite his many commitments, Mike Giroux, a Scarborough native, fishes as often as he can, in all seasons and in all weather. And come striper season, Giroux pays special attention to the sea-run fish that are a favorite among recreational fishermen. He catches a lot, at times as many as 50 bass in an hour.
Column: The Nature Conservancy gets credit for fabulous trail in Leuthold Forest Preserve
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

Number Five Mountain is the central natural feature of the Leuthold Forest Preserve, a 16,690-acre swath of rugged forestland owned and managed by The Nature Conservancy. TNC assembled the ecologically rich preserve, which also features remote ponds and bogs and a long stretch along the Moose River. Number Five Mountain and its remote location appealed to this hiker straight away, earning a top spot on my to-do list of places to explore. ~ Carey Kish
Column: This week, we look at the bumblebee
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

We have only 17 species of bumblebees in the state, so getting a handle on them is not daunting. You can find a great resource for their identification online: https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/documents/BumbleBeeGuideEast2011.pdf ~ Herb Wilson
Editorial: Latest fiasco feeds doubts about CMP
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

Mainers who would like to keep out the cold and dark are starting to wonder if a multinational corporation headquartered overseas can be trusted with such a sensitive job. The Central Maine Power billing fiasco of the last two years has given ammunition to those who say it can’t. The doubts about CMP’s loyalty are more than the usual carping from customers. They are also influencing public opinion in broader policy debates, such as the reaction to a proposed transmission line through western Maine that would bring hydroelectric power from Canada into New England. CMP may not be the best entity to lead such projects.
Letter: Save the planet for your children’s future
Morning Sentinel - Sunday, June 23, 2019 

What if tomorrow you heard from a reputable source that thousands of world-renowned astronomers had agreed that an observed asteroid would collide with the earth in about 30 years, essentially destroying human life on the planet? Substitute for the asteroid the well verified conclusion that climate change, unless its progress is halted in the next decade, will bring about something close to that in your own, your children’s, or certainly your gandchildren’s lifetime. Read. Listen. Discuss. Find the facts. Act upon them. And vote for the right candidates. Whatever your cause, it will be a lost cause unless we address climate change now. ~ Abbott Meader, Oakland
Lewiston stops sending fertilizer sludge to farms after testing high for contaminant
Sun Journal - Saturday, June 22, 2019 

The Lewiston-Auburn Water Pollution Control Authority has put a hold on sending sewage sludge to local farms for fertilizer because it tested high for a chemical linked to cancer and other ailments. A majority of treatment facilities tested so far have had levels of at least one type of per- and polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) substance high enough to merit additional state testing, according to state officials.
UMF Professor Linda Beck awarded Fulbright Scholarship
Daily Bulldog (Franklin County) - Saturday, June 22, 2019 

Linda Beck, University of Maine at Farmington associate dean of experiential and global education, has been awarded a prestigious Fulbright grant to study in Japan this summer. Since joining the faculty in 2006, Beck, UMF associate dean of experiential and global education, and professor of political science, has worked with Maine’s environmental community, serving as president of the Maine Conservation Alliance.
Opinion: Electric cars: Owned by few, subsidized by all
Kennebec Journal - Saturday, June 22, 2019 

Federal and state governments have generous handouts for electric vehicles. The federal tax credit extends up to $7,500. Throw in state subsidies, and that figure can easily top $10,000. Furthermore, utilities that stand to benefit from drivers plugging in for fuel are spending tens of millions of dollars on EV charging stations and billing the costs back to all ratepayers. And let’s not forget, EV drivers don’t pay any gas tax, which is literally highway robbery. Some policymakers want to extend the tax credit permanently. Polling shows the overwhelming majority of Americans don’t even want to give a nickel to pay for someone else’s car purchase. Congress should pump the brakes on this cronyist handout that benefits the elite. ~ Nicolas Loris, The Heritage Foundation
‘If you can’t beat ’em, eat ’em’: Research group looks to culinary solution for green crab infestation problem
Times Record - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Manomet, an environmental research organization, held a culinary event Wednesday aimed at finding tasty ways to eat green crabs as a way of both controlling and profiting from the invasive species. According to Marissa McMahan, a senior fisheries scientist at Manomet, this ever-growing green crab population can be attributed to climate change. Ali Waks-Adams, the new executive chef at the Coast Bar and Bistro at the Daniel Hotel in Brunswick, incorporates green crab into her dishes whenever possible. “Part of being a local chef is helping the community as best as I can,” said Waks-Adams. “I’ve even been to schools and talked to kids about green crabs. They’re so invested in their future because everyone’s family is connected to the fishing industry.”
State OKs Houlton Fair, denies Northern Maine Fair dates
The County - Friday, June 21, 2019 

On Friday, June 14, the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry issued a ruling that denies the Northern Maine Fair’s request to have its festival on July 3-11, 2020; July 2-10, 2021; and July 1-9, 2022. Those dates, however, directly conflicted with the Houlton Agricultural Fair’s requested dates of July 2-5, 2020; July 1-4, 2021; and July 1-4, 2022. The state claimed that if the two fairs were granted overlapping dates, the effect would be negative for both groups.
New Measure Establishes Water Quality Standards For Sustenance Fishing In Maine's Tribal Waters
Maine Public - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Tribal leaders, lawmakers and environmental groups are praising passage of a bill, signed into law by Gov. Janet Mills Friday, that establishes water quality standards for sustenance fishing in tribal waters. This marks the first time the state has created water quality criteria aimed specifically at protecting a practice that is central to the tribes' culture and identity. It also ends a long simmering legal dispute between the state and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on behalf of the tribes.
Mills Signs Bill Designed To Protect Maine Tribal Nations' Fishing Rights
Maine Public - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Maine Gov. Janet Mills has signed legislation designed to protect the rights of Maine Indigenous Tribes to safely fish on certain rivers and streams. “It is high time we healed the divisions of our past, and that we bring the state of Maine’s tribal nations, all four of them, together to build a new future, new partnerships,” says Mills. The legislation will establish new, higher quality standards for waters in which Maine tribal members have traditionally fished to feed their families.
Fawn found on Oakland’s Webb Road thriving at Vassalboro wildlife care center
Morning Sentinel - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Late spring and early summer are the busiest time of year for Donald Cote, who runs The Wildlife Care Center and has been raising and caring for abandoned and injured wildlife for about the last 50 years. As soon as a fawn is able to keep up with its mother, it will travel more with the mother. But that doesn’t mean there are never circumstances in which an animal might be in distress and need help, said Oakland Animal Control Officer Pat Faucher, who two weeks ago rescued a fawn that was found crying on the side of Webb Road in Oakland and was taken to Cote. On Friday it blended in with the group of six other deer in his backyard shed, eagerly drinking from a bottle he fed it by hand.
Harpswell farm demonstrates shepherding success
Forecaster - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Organic farming and herding animals were the demos of the day when visitors gathered at Two Coves Farm on June 15. Joe and Laura Grady began their careers at Two Coves in April 2009 after spending six years at a small boarding school in New Hampshire. Now they take pride in their organic, pasture-based farm. “We just got really swept up in the pasture-based livestock idea. I fell in love with moving livestock with dogs and that whole process,” Joe Grady said. “I was a high school teacher for a couple years before I stopped in order to make this work, and we’ve managed to do this for eight years now without any other employment, which we consider a tremendous success.” Saturday’s demonstration was organized by Friends of Merrymeeting Bay as part of its Summer Outside program.
CMP botched its new billing system, misled customers and left thousands of them angry
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Central Maine Power Co. cut corners, skipped critical tests, and misrepresented the extent of problems with its new billing system. Watch for a full report in the June 23 Maine Sunday Telegram. [video]
Brunswick will continue BREEZ bus service for at least another six months, to consider joining Metro in 2020
Times Record - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Town councilors voted earlier this week to extend Brunswick’s Metro BREEZ service for another six months, a decision which will cost the town roughly $48,000 next year. It could cost as much as $77,950 by 2021 if they elect to join the Metro service permanently. Ridership has exceeded original estimates by 24% in the first year and 47% in the second year of Brunswick’s participation.
The Maine Wildlife Park Is Awesome
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, June 21, 2019 

The Maine Wildlife Park in Gray is an amazing place. Operated by the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, they have dozens of wild animals, including moose, deer, and bears, along with fishers, bobcats, owls, and turtles, and lots more. I like the fact that these animals are not just in cages but are in habitats like they would live in in the wild. The deer, moose, and bears enjoy large areas in which to roam. You don’t even have to be a little kid to enjoy the park, and I encourage you to visit sometime soon.
Summer arrives today but will there be sun?
Sun Journal - Friday, June 21, 2019 

On the first day of summer today, when the summer solstice should give us the most hours of sun, the sun seems to have gone missing, as it has much of the spring. Since January, rainfall has been 3 inches above normal and higher than average in April, May and June.
Column: Mainers are lucky to have as many singing birds as we do
Bangor Daily News - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Since mid-May, I have guided for three birding festivals, a Road Scholars program, two five-day tours and a couple of Maine Audubon events. I have a good sense of what birds are doing everywhere in Maine except in my own backyard. Today is different. I am sitting and listening. It’s good to be home. I’ve missed this. Mainers live in a special place. Every yard has its own bird drama, including yours. ~ Bob Duchesne
Column: Facing a reckoning — a ‘Climate Chronology’ illustrates decades lost in a treacherous time lag between scientific evidence of the climate crisis and policy action
Times Record - Friday, June 21, 2019 

In the mid-1800s, Irish physicist John Tyndall figured out that atmospheric gases could trap heat. By 1900, Swedish chemist Svante Arrhenius calculated how much warming would occur with a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide. The National Academy of Sciences issued a report in 1977 linking global warming to increased fossil fuel use. By 1985, the year the United States helped negotiate an international agreement to protect the ozone layer, we should have been on our way to reducing the fossil fuels cooking our planet. That didn’t happen. Why do we still have leaders – especially a U.S. president – seemingly immune to demonstrable scientific evidence? The climate crisis is “the biggest challenge ever to face” our species, says Sharon Tisher, a longtime lecturer at UMaine. ~ Marina Schauffler
Commentary: Maine wilderness can help save us from climate, extinction crises
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Thoreau statement, “In wildness is the preservation of the world,” has become the blueprint for confronting two great global crises of our time: human-caused climate change, and the rapid extinction of plants and animals. The “miracles of technology” alone cannot save us from the dual threat of climate chaos and extinction catastrophe. One of the most cost-effective and rapidly scalable solutions to both of these crises is startlingly low-tech: Conserve more wild forests. Northeastern wildlands can be the lungs of a healthier planet and bastions of biodiversity if we choose to protect them today, but there must be renewed public enthusiasm and commensurate philanthropic support. ~ Jon Leibowitz, Northeast Wilderness Trust
Letter: Carbon fee would recognize urgency of climate change
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Earlier this week, the Canadian House of Commons declared a national climate emergency. As Maine is surrounded by Canada on three sides and Portland is the same latitude as Toronto, shouldn’t we also be taking emergency action? Specifically, shouldn’t we be sharply reducing CO2 emissions, the primary driver of climate change? The Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 763), co-sponsored by Chellie Pingree and 47 other U.S. representatives, would do just that. Write Rep. Jared Golden to urge his co-sponsorship and ask Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King to support companion legislation when it’s introduced in the Senate. ~ Mason Morfit, South Freeport
Letter: Aspiring Planning Board members urged to treat Portland’s waterfront with care
Portland Press Herald - Friday, June 21, 2019 

Anyone aspiring to serve on the city’s Planning Board should have a wise appreciation for the necessary requisites supportive of a most important prime industry – fishing – on Portland’s working waterfront. With an ever-supportive and appreciative Planning Board, the important work of fishing on the working waterfront will be properly cocooned from harm, admired and appreciated as it deserves always to be. ~ Loretta MacKinnon, Yarmouth
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A Climate Chronology

© Sharon S. Tisher / University of Maine


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