April 23, 2019  
Announcements               
Press releases, events, publications released, etc. from Maine environmental organizations and agencies. Submit content.

K2–The Savage Mountain: A New History 1924-1954, Jan 5
Event - Posted - Wednesday, December 27, 2017 

Using newly discovered portraits and original expedition photos taken by climbers, Ed Webster chronicles the link between early New Hampshire mountaineers and their monumental efforts to make the first ascent of K2, the Himalayan peak widely regarded as Earth’s toughest summit. At LL Bean, Freeport, January 5, 7 pm.
6th Annual Rally of Unity, Jan 3
Event - Posted - Wednesday, December 27, 2017 

The 2018 Rally of Unity focuses on sustainability, featuring group displays, posters, handouts etc. At Maine State House, Hall of Flags, Augusta, January 3, 9 am - 1 pm, speakers begin at 10 am. Sponsored by Alliance For The Common Good.
Solstice by the Sea, Dec 21
Event - Posted - Thursday, December 14, 2017 

Friends of Sears Island will host “Solstice by the Sea: A Celebration of Light” include a walk along a path lit with hundreds of luminarias and will culminate with music, readings, and cocoa and cookies on the beach. At Sears Island, Searsport, December 21, 6 pm.
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
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.
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.
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.
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News Items
Cadillac Summit Road in Acadia National Park open
Maine Environmental News - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

The Cadillac Summit Road in Acadia National Park is now open. Watch for black ice as temperatures drop during the late evening and early morning. Snow and icy conditions persist on some trails. Cyclists may encounter lingering sand and gravel on the Park Loop Road.
IDEXX CEO Establishes Wild Cat Conservation Foundation
Other - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., a Maine-based global leader in veterinary diagnostics and software, today announced that its Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Jonathan Ayers, and his wife, Helaine, have established a foundation that will support conservation of the estimated 40 species of felids in the wild. The Ayers Wild Cat Conservation Trust is endowed by a gift of IDEXX stock from the Ayers family. The foundation will focus on supporting the funding of global wild cat species conservation initiatives and organizations.
There’s yoga for every type of Mainer, from beer drinkers to goat lovers
Bangor Metro - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

If you’re looking to head outside and mix up (or begin) a regular yoga practice, Maine is the place to start. Alongside traditional yoga styles such as Vinyasa and Bikram, Vacationland’s many studios also offer classes that include disco yoga, beer can yoga, goat yoga and aerial yoga, all of which teachers say are good for the new or veteran yogi.
Maine founders of International Appalachian Trail celebrate 25th anniversary
Bangor Daily News - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

Three of the founders of the International Appalachian Trail met in Portland on Monday for an informal ceremony marking the 25th anniversary of the trail’s formation. Former commissioner of the Maine Department of Conservation Dick Anderson, former president of the Chewonki Foundation Don Hudson and former Gov. Joseph Brennan joined forces April 22, 1994, to announce the formation of the trail. Anderson envisioned a trail that connected the highest points of Maine, New Brunswick and Quebec. Since then, the trail has expanded to Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Ireland, Scotland, England, Wales, France, Spain, Portugal, and Morocco.
Letter: Embrace wind, not hydropower
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

If Northern Pass did not pass the aesthetics test in New Hampshire, I don’t see why a longer, less direct utility corridor in Maine would be any different. It’s too bad our previous governor chose to spurn a serious offshore wind turbine project. I was hoping our present governor would have a primary attitude about energy other than “Turn on the spigot.” The enduring lesson is: Conservation first and foremost. If so, we wouldn’t have asinine accusations about which industries are bankrolling which side of the issue with their ad money. This state should be focused on self-sustaining clean-energy production, not corporate welfare passing through. ~ Douglas Rohman, East Waterboro
Letter: Food insecurity is a widespread but hidden Maine problem
Portland Press Herald - Tuesday, April 23, 2019 

When then-Gov. Paul LePage cut the budget for food stamps, people who previously qualified for food stamps were left with limited access to food. This is affecting our Maine family members, from our children to our elders. Food insecurity has been shown to increase the risk of depression, diabetes and many other chronic conditions. Food insecurity is not always evident. Society has put a stigma on asking for help. We need to start thinking of food as a basic human right as well as a need. Thirty-seven percent of people who are food insecure in Maine do not qualify for food stamps. These are the people who we have failed. ~ Katelyn Seavey, Sanford
Experts: You can save money and help the planet with a heat pump
Sun Journal - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Want to save hundreds of dollars on your annual heating costs and help the planet? Want air conditioning at a good price on those increasingly hot summer days? Install a heat pump, says Michael Stoddard, executive director of the Efficiency Maine Trust, which runs weatherization and rebate programs for energy-efficient heating systems and appliances. The installation of one heat pump is projected to save between $300 and $600 a year. Later this year, Gov. Janet Mills is rolling out an initiative aimed at getting 100,000 heat pumps into Maine buildings over the next five years.
Bangor won’t revisit backyard chicken ban
Bangor Daily News - Monday, April 22, 2019 

The Bangor City Council has decided against reconsidering a city rule that prohibits people who live in residential neighborhoods from raising chickens in their backyards. On Monday night, the group voted 5-2 against considering whether to remove the prohibition. Bangor ordinances only allow residents to keep chickens — and numerous other kinds of livestock — in the rural and agricultural sections of the city.
L.L. Bean recycles 40+ million plastic bottles
Other - Monday, April 22, 2019 

L.L. Bean says it has turned more than 40 million plastic bottles into polyester fabric for its clothing and outerwear.
Tourism 101: How to ready Lewiston-Auburn for more business
Sun Journal - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Visitors in 2017 spent $670 million in the Lakes and Mountains tourism region, which includes the Twin Cities. Regional numbers for 2018 are still being tallied, but statewide the number of first-time visitors was up 21.1%. The message Monday: Let’s not stop there. The Lewiston Auburn Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce hosted the first of three tourism forums Monday that dove into visitor statistics, took quick stock of the area and offered advice.
Gardiner support sought for Merrymeeting Trail project
Kennebec Journal - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Gardiner elected officials will consider whether to lend their support to a proposed resolve at the Maine State Legislature to extend a multi-use trail from Gardiner to Topsham along the west bank of the Kennebec River and Merrymeeting Bay. The resolve, L.D. 1141, directs the Department of Transportation to build the Merrymeeting Trail from Tophsam to Gardiner in an existing railroad corridor that the department owns. The Merrymeeting Trail Board of Supervisors is asking for a letter of endorsement.
New Climate Change Activists
Maine Public - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Maine Calling.
Video: Slo-mo shows birds of a feather at a Maine bird feeder
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Videographer Roger McCord offers a close-up view of life on the feeder in spring.
Music, jambalaya help fund lobstermen's legal fights
Village Soup Journal (Waldo County) - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Bowen’s Tavern in Belfast was the destination for lobstermen and lobster lovers on Saturday, April 6, where an evening to raise money for the Maine Lobstermen’s Association (MLA) Legal Defense Fund took place. The MLA is the state’s oldest fishermen’s organization, founded in 1954.
Column: Power siblings
Daily Bulldog (Franklin County) - Monday, April 22, 2019 

The Conservation Law Foundation is firmly in favor of Central Maine’s Power’s plan to build a 145-mile transmission line through western Maine to bring Canadian hydropower to Massachusetts. According to the CLF website, tapping Hydro-Quebec’s electricity “makes us reliant on big, carbon-emitting Canadian hydropower, undermining the market for New England’s own home-grown zero-carbon renewable energy.” Wait, what? Oh, the foundation was opposing a similar proposal called the Northern Pass that was supposed to run through New Hampshire. NECEC is totally different – in ways that aren’t readily apparent. ~ Al Diamon
Regulators Consider New Rules On Fishermen To Protect Right Whales
Maine Public - Monday, April 22, 2019 

This could be a big week for the endangered North Atlantic right whale, and for Maine's lobster fishery as well. A meeting in Providence will consider new regulations on lobster and other fishermen to protect the roughly 400 remaining whales from becoming entangled in fishing gear. Remedies on the table range from gear changes, such as breakaway rope or proposed "rope-less" trap-hauling technology, to limits on trap numbers, to periodic closures of ocean areas when whales are likely to be swimming through.
Amazing bear photos
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Dawn Brown of New Sharon cares for bears at her home and is a real enthusiast for them. She is also a bear behavioral researcher. I have honestly never seen black bear photos as amazing as hers. You’ve really got to check these out which you can do on her website HTTPS://BEARTODREAM.NET.
Waterfront property at the heart of stormy Belfast standoff is listed for sale
Bangor Daily News - Monday, April 22, 2019 

The standoff between Belfast real estate developer Paul Naron and city officials over access to a popular pedestrian path has led to something new: a listing for the waterfront property that is at the heart of the controversy. Realtor Mike Cunning said Naron’s two adjacent parcels that total 1.8 acres are listed for $3.5 million. Cunning said that he will let all prospective buyers know about the ongoing situation with the city that evidently has soured Naron’s desire to convert the two waterfront buildings on the property to multi-use commercial spaces and expand the existing wharf to create a marina.
Is South Portland the ‘greenest’ city in Maine?
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 22, 2019 

This year, 17 cities and towns across Maine have formed a coalition, led by South Portland, to help pursue legislation that would make it easier for municipalities to develop solar facilities and other projects geared toward increasing sustainability, lowering costs and reducing carbon footprints. Officials from more than a dozen other communities are keeping track. Forming the coalition solidified South Portland’s standing as a statewide leader in sustainable policymaking and practices, which take into account the preservation of natural resources.
Lead paint safety program working in Maine, research shows
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 22, 2019 

Maine’s rigorous new testing standards for lead poisoning in children has resulted in additional inspections of dwellings for lead paint, and those inspections have led to more lead hazards being discovered and removed, according to recently published research. Currently, all children who receive Medicaid are tested for lead exposure. A bill pending in the Legislature would require lead testing for all 1- and 2-year-old children in Maine. Maine is the only New England state that does not conduct universal testing for children, but was one of the first states to use the reduced threshold for the blood test.
Letter: Climate lobby gives reason to hope
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 22, 2019 

If, like me, you are feeling that your efforts to “reduce, reuse, recycle” are insufficient to restore the planet to health for your children and grandchildren, there is reason to hope. I was telling a friend of my feeling of powerlessness in the face of increasing climate disasters – floods, hurricanes and health affected by air quality, etc. She invited me to look up the CitizensClimateLobby.org. I attended a local meeting this week. I came away enthusiastic and uplifted. If you are looking for hope, even joy, check it out. ~ Valerie Blais, Portland
Letter: Cheers for South Portland’s pesticide ban
Portland Press Herald - Monday, April 22, 2019 

I want to thank South Portland’s City Council for having passed ordinances that ban the use of pesticides that have recently been found legally responsible for causing cancer in humans. And I appreciate their continued attention to these issues and concern for the health and welfare of our community and beyond. Now South Portland is considering companion ordinances, adding chemical fertilizers to the banned pesticides. On April 9th, there will be an important program exploring both the dangers of chemical fertilizers and effective alternatives. I plan to be there. ~ Louise Tate, South Portland
The Maine Event: CMP Corridor Controversy
Maine Public - Sunday, April 21, 2019 

Former Republican State Senator Roger Katz and Democratic State Senator Erin Herbig as they peal the layers of information on the CMP Corridor Controversy. Guests: CMP spokesperson John Carroll and Maine State Senator Mark Lawrence.
Auburn stretching Earth Day into May
Turner Publishing - Sunday, April 21, 2019 

The city is stretching its Earth Day celebration through May, up until its Memorial Day celebration, as part of the city Countdown to Summer. Residents, organizations, businesses, schools and neighborhoods are urged by city officials to do something, big or small, to help keep Auburn beautiful and to prepare for the upcoming Memorial Day celebration on May 27.
Mt. Abram ski resort plans to build Maine’s largest mountain bike park
Sun Journal - Sunday, April 21, 2019 

Over the next six years, Mt. Abram is building the largest mountain bike park in Maine from scratch, up to 16 trails accessibly by chairlift. Alex Graves will be up in the woods mapping out each jump, drop and switchback. He and others pitched the million-dollar project to the ownership group that bought the ski resort last fall, a group he describes as local homeowners dedicated to keeping the mountain going.
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