January 20, 2019  
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News Items
5 reusable products to help you reduce waste
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

We live in a disposable culture. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the average American throws out 4.4 pounds of garbage per day. If you are looking to reduce your contribution to landfills, here are seven products you can use (and reuse) to reduce the amount of garbage you dispose every day.
The Bangor area was once home to more than 10 ski areas — all now lost
Bangor Daily News - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

As recently as 40 years ago there were at least 12 known ski mountains and hills in the Bangor area of varying size and popularity. A few of them were big enough to boast paid memberships, ski lifts and full-service lodges. Some were little more than a hill with a portable rope tow set up for parts of the winter. Today, they’re all either overgrown, privately owned or in some cases, both.
Solar-panel plan for Blaine House sends a message
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

The Mills administration is drawing up a request for proposals over the coming weeks to install solar-electric panels on the Blaine House, an action meant to signal that Maine once again aims to be a leader in clean energy development.
Clean-energy agenda sees power surge in Augusta
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

Rep. Chloe Maxmin, D-Nobleboro, is the lead sponsor of a bill to create a Green New Deal in Maine. The bill would chart a path for Maine to get all its power from renewable sources by 2030, transforming the economy and creating clean-energy-sector jobs. Maxmin’s bill also is emblematic of the surge of energy-related proposals in Augusta this year. Taken together, more than 60 separate working titles would have the effect of reversing the priorities of former Gov. Paul LePage.
Dreaming of a lobster license, but trapped on a waitlist
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

Most lobster fishing zones in Maine were closed to newcomers almost 20 years ago in an effort to prevent overfishing and the turf wars that can happen when a fishery grows too large, too fast. Would-be lobstermen who finish a state apprenticeship program go on the zone waiting list, where they must wait for a certain number of fishermen to give up their licenses, or their trap tags, before they can start fishing. State lawmakers want to help people who have been languishing on the apprentice waitlist for years. Rep. Jay McCreight, D-Harpswell, has proposed a bill that would give licenses to anyone who has been on the list for a decade or more. Based on state records, 55 of the 248 people currently sitting on one of the seven regional waitlists would fall into that category.
Opinion: Loggers and conservationists have many common interests
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

The Professional Logging Contractors of Maine would like to commend Kate Dempsey, director of The Nature Conservancy in Maine, for her Dec. 30 Maine Voices column: “When it comes to preserving northern forests, Maine can’t afford to falter.” We need to do all we can to preserve and build our professional logging and trucking workforce, as it will be essential to preserving our northern forests through responsible timber harvesting and management to achieve this shared vision. ~ Dana Doran, Professional Logging Contractors of Maine
Letter: Misuse of recycling bins the real problem
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

I can’t believe that ecomaine does not want all the clean and appropriate recyclables available to sustain and keep the nonprofit viable. I cannot believe ecomaine cares from which town or from which household appropriate recyclables come from. Putting a wall around Augusta’s containers does not address the real problem — misuse. Thinking that the nonrecyclables left outside the bins are from out-of-towners is silly. How parochial this thinking is at this time when our environment is threatened. I believe all good actions that help manage waste should be encouraged, not thwarted. ~ Judy Powell, Whitefield
Letter: Reid wrong pick for DEP commissioner
Kennebec Journal - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

Please tell your state senator and members of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee that Maine deserves a DEP head who hasn’t advocated for polluting interests and against the Penobscot Nation. ~ Katherine Rhoda, Hiram
Letter: Fish farms could fill a critical need in Maine
Maine Sunday Telegram - Sunday, January 20, 2019 

Maine has a proud tradition of being an agricultural state. We also used to be proud of our salmon. There was a long-standing tradition where the first salmon caught in Maine each year was sent to the White House. I find the reluctance of Maine to embrace land-based fish farming to be at odds with the state’s core values. Maine has traditionally supported its farmers and recognized how unforgiving and important their work is. Maine is the third most food insecure state in the nation, but we are still debating the value of growing food locally? I would be proud to once again see a smiling president pose with a fresh salmon from Maine. ~ ???
Northeast states target transportation emissions
Other - Saturday, January 19, 2019 

Tribune - Nine states and Washington, D.C., commit to a 'RGGI redux' and are hopeful that New York and Maine will join the group. Transportation produces about 40 percent of carbon emissions in the region.
Opinion: Next president must make climate change top priority
Washington Post - Saturday, January 19, 2019 

We are the first generation to feel the sting of climate change, and we are the last generation that can do something about it. The Democratic Party must nominate a candidate who will put fighting climate change at the top of the agenda. And that’s why I’m seriously considering running for president. Confronting climate change will require a full-scale mobilization — a national mission that must be led from the White House. This is the challenge we face and the choice facing American voters in 2020. ~ Jay Inslee, governor of Washington
Column: Judy Camuso seems like a good choice as IF&W commissioner
Sun Journal - Saturday, January 19, 2019 

n terms of background, experience and temperament, it seems that Camuso has the right qualifications for the job of commissioner of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. As wildlife director, she managed a staff of regional wildlife biologists, oversaw a large budget and dealt with a mix of diverse constituents that included state politicians, as well as consumptive and non-consumptive users. Because Camuso was a strong and effective advocate for the game management value of recreational bear hunting during the controversial bear referendum, her appointment, however, will no doubt be opposed by the anti-bear-hunting faction. For most of us in the sporting community, her role in that debate is reason alone to support her appointment with vigor. ~ V. Paul Reynolds
Letter: Not as it should be
Sun Journal - Saturday, January 19, 2019 

Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has been captured by the number of hunters and trappers whose licensing fees and related expenses create an important source of revenue. The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, The Maine Trappers Association, and the NRA receive special treatment, even though they are a small proportion of the state’s population. DIFW’s own figures show that only about 13 percent of Mainers hunt and less than 2 percent trap. Why should that minority make major decisions about the state’s animals? ~ Don Loprieno, Bristol
Blog: Environmental Priorities Coalition
Natural Resources Council of Maine - Friday, January 18, 2019 

When it comes to tackling the complex environmental issues facing our state, nation, and world, it is always the case that we are stronger when we work together. That’s why the Natural Resources Council of Maine was proud to join with legislators and nonprofit partners at the State House yesterday morning for the unveiling of Common Agenda for the Environmental Priorities Coalition. EPC is a group of 34 environmental, conservation, and public health organizations in Maine that sets a Common Agenda of priority bills for each legislative session. NRCM is directly involved in advocating for or leading on many of the nine bills included in this year’s agenda, covering a wide range of topics.
Early indications show 2018 was a strong year for lobster landings in Maine
Portland Press Herald - Friday, January 18, 2019 

The state won't release official numbers until next month, but preliminary data indicates that harvesters landed more than 100 million pounds for the eighth straight year. The state follows the $1.4 billion a year industry closely. It is Maine’s global brand, and it employs thousands of Mainers, many living where jobs are scarce.
Farmland Trust Leader To Take Over As Maine Ag Commissioner
Maine Public - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills has picked the executive director of Maine Farmland Trust to become the commissioner of the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. Mills will nominate Amanda Beal to lead an agency that oversees a wide range of interests, including land conservation, commercial farming and the state's once mighty wood products industry. Beal said that she'll work with all stakeholders served by the Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry.
Mills makes Maine Farmland Trust leader her final Cabinet pick
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Gov. Janet Mills announced Friday afternoon that she has chosen the president of Maine Farmland Trust to head the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. Amanda Beal is the Democratic governor’s pick to lead the department, which was created by the merger of separate agriculture and conservation agencies in 2012.
Mills chooses head of farmland preservation group as agricultural commissioner
Portland Press Herald - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Gov. Janet Mills has nominated the head of Maine Farmland Trust to serve as commissioner of the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. If confirmed by the Maine Senate, Amanda Beal will lead a large state agency that oversees farming programs, state parks and public lands, the Maine Forest Service and a broad range of other programs. Beal grew up on a dairy farm in Litchfield and has been active on food policy issues. She also has ties to the conservation community, currently serving as president and CEO of the Maine Farmland Trust.
Feedback Sought On Plan To Manage Rural Maine Land
Associated Press - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Maine is looking for the public's feedback about how to better manage tens of thousands of acres of rural land and woods. The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry's Bureau of Parks and Lands is working on the final draft of a management plan about the state's Upper Kennebec region. The plan will steer the way the bureau manages areas such as Sugar Island Public Reserved Lands and undeveloped state park areas. The area includes lands to the east and west of Moosehead Lake, which is one of the most popular tourism spots in inland Maine.
Judy Camuso and four bills debated on January 30
George Smith BDN Outdoor News Blog - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Judy Camuso’s confirmation hearing is scheduled for 9 AM on January 30 by the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee at the legislature. I’m enthusiastic about speaking for Judy, because I was a strong advocate for her appointment.
Column: Birds have evolved to excel at certain skills
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 18, 2019 

Evolution is nature’s way of ensuring survival of the fittest. “Evolution” is also the name of a board game from North Star Games. I played it several times with family members over the holidays. It’s a hoot. I am deeply amused by the game, because it reminds me Maine’s bird world is full of such evolutionary amusement. Each bird must follow two rules: Eat. Don’t get eaten. ~ Bob Duchesne
Biologists are wrestling with deer so they can study how they die
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 18, 2019 

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife has set up four study areas for a deer winter mortality study. The differing latitudes of the sites were selected to try to determine how winter severity may change the farther north in the state the deer live and to ascertain how that severity could affect the deer herd. An addition this year: Two of those sites are located near winter deer-feeding operations.
Opinion: To manage bear population, stop feeding them
Kennebec Journal - Friday, January 18, 2019 

In 2004 and again in 2014, wildlife biologists in the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife said that baiting, hounding and trapping bears were necessary management tools, without which Maine’s bear population would explode. The department provided no science to back up their claim. In 2015, researchers at USM produced a paper titled “Controlling the Black Bear Population in Maine”. One of the conclusions was that “using bait increases the black bear population to very high levels.” This claim has been made by wildlife advocates for many years and has been ignored by IF&W. Maine only needs to stop its bear-feeding program to allow the bear population to decrease and remain at lower, sustainable levels. Of course, this would mean the end of training bears to answer the dinner bell so they can be shot at point-blank range while their head is buried in a barrel of food scraps. ~ John Glowa Sr., South China
Letter: Reid not right for DEP
Bangor Daily News - Friday, January 18, 2019 

I’m alarmed at Jerry Reid’s nomination to head the Department of Environmental Protection. Intentionally or not, he worked to advance the interests of polluting intervenors in that case, making for an unseemly appearance of conflict of interest. ~ Katherine Rhoda, Hiram
Maine school district reinstates potato harvest break; superintendent resigns
Associated Press - Thursday, January 17, 2019 

A potato harvest is being reinstated for high school students in a Maine school district. Superintendent Brian Carpenter resigned after School Administrative District 1 voted 12-2 Wednesday night. The district represents the Presque Isle High School, the largest in Aroostook County. The board previously voted to discontinue the harvest break, but decided to reconsider the decision after farmers, business leaders, and other community members voiced concerns.
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